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PeppTalk

Should juries be scrapped in rape trials?

Labour MP, Ann Coffey, has recently commented that juries in rape trials may have to be abolished to stop falling conviction rates. Ms Coffey told the Commons that rape myths including views that “women invite rape by what they wear” or “real rapes are done by strangers in alleyways” were dominant in society. She added that “defence lawyers play up (such) myths in an attempt to rubbish the witness”. Advocates are simply not allowed to “rubbish the witness”. Where a [...]

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A pupil barrister’s perspective of pupillage at the employed bar

At the beginning of 2018, Pepperells in house chambers department were successful in receiving approval from the Bar Standards Board (BSB) to train pupil barristers. I was lucky enough to be offered pupillage at Pepperells in April 2018 and we have another pupil due to start her pupillage in January 2019. In October in-house pupillages hit the headlines when DWF announced that they were looking to recruit their first pupil barristers. Since this announcement there has been a noticeable interest [...]

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Resurrection of the Probate ‘Stealth Tax’

As a personal representative of an estate, you will be required to apply for a Grant of Probate or a Grant of Letters of Administration/ Representation where the estate includes properties or investment products (including stocks and shares) that are to be sold or transferred. In estates where there are insurance policies or bank accounts holding a value of over approximately £5,000 it is highly likely that the Grant will be required.  Please bear in mind that the amount that [...]

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Christian Middleton: Mentoring at the UTC Northern Lincolnshire

This year I have signed up with Engineering UTC Northern Lincolnshire in Scunthorpe to become a mentor on their Mentorship Scheme. The Scheme is designed to give students an opportunity to interact with people already in a working environment so they can gain insight as to how their mentors made it to where they are today. The scheme currently entails three schedule meetings between myself and the two students that I mentor throughout their school year and for me to offer [...]

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What do you do if you hear nothing from your spouse in response to your divorce Petition?

When you begin Divorce Proceedings, one of the early steps will be to send the Divorce Petition to Court Divorce Centre and then have the issued copy sent to your ex-partner. This is known as ‘serving’ the Divorce Petition. Once your Divorce Petition has been sent to the Divorce Centre and issued, it is usually the court’s job to send the Divorce Petition and accompanying documents to your spouse via Royal Mail to the postal address you gave on the [...]

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The Wonderland Ball 2018

Pepperells Solicitors are extremely proud to be co-hosting The Wonderland Ball with Quick and Clarke Estate Agents on 16th November 2018.  This fantastic event is supporting two local charities, Dove House Hospice and The Queens Oncology Unit at Castle Hill Hospital. This event would not have been possible without the support of local and national businesses and individuals and thank everyone who has contributed either by donating prizes or purchasing tickets to the event. Both charities are close to everyone’s hearts [...]

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Will you still be protected as a consumer using the legal profession?

This firm is regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority which provides a number of rules and guidelines to be followed, particularly focusing on compliance and conduct designed to protect the consumer. The Legal Services Board has just approved SRA plans to allow solicitors to work for unregulated businesses – which they think will liberate the legal marketplace. Whilst this would appear to be good news, it also poses a number of risks. The aim is to promote competition, allow freelance work [...]

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Victim compensation: Evidencing struggles more important than ever

The Criminal Injury Compensation Scheme is designed to provide compensation for victims of crime. Since the introduction of the 2012 scheme, the Criminal Injury Compensation Authority (CICA) has raised the threshold of how serious an injury needs to be when awarding compensation. You must have surgery or experience a significant disability to be eligible for compensation. With mental injuries, you must suffer from a recognised mental injury which has been confirmed by either a psychologist or clinical psychiatrist for at least six [...]

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Civil partnership change will drive inheritance tax benefits

The recent announcement by Prime Minister Theresa May that heterosexual couples will be able to choose between marriage and a civil partnership is welcome news to many. It followed a Supreme Court ruling earlier this year that deemed existing legislation discriminatory as same-sex couples can enter civil partnerships or get married, while opposite-sex couples can only do the latter. The principle of equality drove the changes, but for the 3.3m unmarried, cohabiting couples in the UK, it will have many, far-reaching [...]

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Domestic violence victims do not need to suffer in silence

Domestic violence is one of the most hidden forms of abuse. Many people suffer daily – physically, emotionally and psychologically. In North Lincolnshire we have recently seen how an abusive relationship led to the loss of a life. The victim was described as “kind, selfless and someone who always had a smile” by her friends and family. Victims of domestic violence do not need to suffer in silence. There are steps that can be taken to protect them from their abuser [...]

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