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Should people receive assistance in committing suicide?

In the recent case of R (on the application of Conway) v Secretary of State for Justice, Mr. Noel Conway was refused the right to receive assistance to end his life following a diagnosis of Motor Neurone Disease (MND) a number of years ago. Despite his initial application and subsequent appeal being rejected, Mr. Conway set out an interesting argument which may prove essential in Parliament changing their current stance on assisted suicide. When arguing his case, Mr. Conway [...]

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Is a no-fault divorce going to be introduced in 2019?

Will 2019 be the year we see an end to the blame game when it comes to divorce? At the end of 2018, it was announced by the Government that it is committed to helping couples divorce more amicably. Currently, the person who starts proceedings must prove that the marriage has irretrievably broke down by establishing one of the five facts: Adultery Unreasonable behaviour Desertion 2 years separation with consent 5 years separation (no consent required) The government have proposed a consultation with the consideration of: Retaining [...]

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Pupillage Interview – Top Tip

The pupillage gateway for 2019 is now closed and all of you aspiring barristers will be eagerly awaiting a response from your desired sets.  First of all, do not be disheartened if you do not get an interview – you do not know what that set was specifically looking for. Do not take it personally. Make sure you still apply to that chambers next time around as what they are looking for will change. For those of you who [...]

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Landmark Draft Legislation for Victims of Domestic Abuse

The Government’s new plans to tackle domestic abuse comes in the form of the new draft Bill known as “Transforming the Response to Domestic Abuse: Consultation Response and Draft Bill”. This Bill, which is yet to be published, has been introduced as part of the Government’s plans to transform the way we think about domestic abuse and includes new measures to effectively tackle domestic abuse. One the most important measures to be welcomed by not only legal professionals but victims [...]

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The Help to Buy ISA

The Help to Buy ISA is a government scheme to help first time buyers get onto the property ladder. The scheme is open individuals aged 16 and over who are saving up to purchase their first home. To be eligible for a help to buy ISA you must:- be a UK Resident have a valid national insurance number be a first time buyer, and not own a property anywhere in the world not have another active cash ISA in the same tax year In [...]

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New Year’s resolution – “to be a responsible Tenant”

A new year opens and January blues strikes for retailers and hospitality industries in particular, as trade dramatically reduces due to over expenditure in December.  If you trade in a property, pursuant to a lease, it is important to note the following tips so that you can begin a new year as a responsible Tenant… Opening hours Despite the lack of footfall and drop in figures for your business, it is important to remain aware of the opening hours you may [...]

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Katerina Woodcock: Comments on the Government’s recently published White Paper concerning EU migrant workers rights’ in the United Kingdom post Brexit

The Government has recently published a White Paper (the Report)[i] on the potential future relationship between the United Kingdom and the European Union, post Brexit, particularly with regard to EU workers’ rights to work in the UK once the Government brings to an end EU free-movement rights. The current predictions for the date of the proposed roll out of the new ‘skills based immigration system’ is 30th June 2021, to coincide with the deadline for European nationals and their family [...]

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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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