Monthly Archives: January 2021

Webinar: Corporate Insolvency & Governance Act (CIGA) – 6 months on

Jeff Roberts from Collyer Bristow’s Insolvency team is joined by Colin Haig, the current President of R3 and Head of Restructuring at Azets; Lee Manning, a former President of R3 and a Partner at ReSolve; and Malcolm Weir, Director of …

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Kim vs Kanye: Will the terms of their prenup be upheld if they divorce?

If the rumours are true Kim Kardashian and Kanye West have now “completely stopped marriage counselling” and their nearly seven-year marriage is sadly heading to the divorce courts. While some may feel that two lucky Californian attorneys are about to …

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Richard Viegas named in The Lawyer’s Hot 100 2021

The Lawyer’s prestigious annual list recognises the most daring, innovative and creative lawyers from in-house, private practice and the Bar. These talented individuals are chosen for both their excellence and their relevance. They are doing extremely important work and are …

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Taking time off to look after dependants

The general rule Under sections 57A and 57B of the Employment Rights Act 1996 all employees are entitled to take a ‘reasonable’ amount of time off from work to take ‘necessary’ action to deal with unforeseen emergencies involving their dependants. …

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Firms told to look out for domestic abuse signs

The pandemic is making employers and employees re-assess the value of the workplace. One factor, as Business Minister Paul Scully MP has pointed out, is rarely considered: are employees being subjected to domestic abuse?All employers have a duty of health and safety towards their employees which includes when employees are working from home. Employers need to really think about this and not assume everyone has the same home life. For example: an employee is desperate to go back to the office when they seem ok working from home – why is this? An employee is particularly distressed at the idea of being furloughed – could this be because they are scared of being at home? It is not implausible that an employee may be safer going to the office and risking contracting Covid-19 than staying at home with their abuser. Employers must be alive to this fact.It is good to see that the government is actively considering the impact of domestic abuse on employees and giving employers tips on how to recognise the signs, but the awareness campaign needs to go further. It is for all of us to spread the word that this is a real, sometimes life-threatening, issue which happens every day.Many victims of abuse are employed, meaning that they will likely have a boss they speak to every day. If that boss were trained to pick up the signs that something is wrong then a dialogue of how to combat the issue can start, and that is the first step to a way out for the victim. Everything starts with colleagues paying attention to each other more and talking about abuse openly. Employers have the power to start that dialogue today.Read Mr Scully’s full letter for advice on how employers can combat domestic abuse here. This includes free tips which employers can do almost immediately, and I would strongly recommend that employers read it.

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Office closures in the current lockdown

Are the new restrictions guidance or law? The idea that the government’s directions for the third lockdown are ‘just guidance’ and not law is a myth. As of 6 January 2021, The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (No.3) and (all Tiers) …

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Working from home will not be the new normal post-Covid, says Rishi Sunak

The Chancellor makes some good points in this article, but he does seem to paint an idealistic picture of working in the City which does not necessarily reflect reality.The Chancellor is right that we are social beings, and we all miss even the minor interactions we used to have with colleagues in the office, but does that really mean we will be going back to the office full time and resuming our working lives as they once were? The Chancellor has pointed out that 75% of investment banks would let their staff work from home at least some of the time – I find that figure surprising (although I do not think this is representative of most sectors as investment banking is somewhat unique in its working style). I too am missing the buzz of central London, that ‘spark’ of creativity the office brings, and after work dinners and drinks with friends. But are we all really ready to give up the liberties working from home provides?It is a question for employers, too. The prospect of paying (often astronomical) overheads for prime London real estate only to have some of the workforce actually use that space is by no means a tempting one and is perhaps enough for some to close their premises altogether. Some employers may even find that their staff are even more productive when they are at home because a better work/life balance should go some way to preventing the ‘burn out’ which some London employers have historically struggled to prevent.I do not think that most London office workers will ever fully return to the office. Instead, I think we will see a new ‘hybrid’ way of working emerge which can take the best of our traditional working habits and of working from home. What that will actually look like, we simply do not know.

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Website cookies crumble as they fail to meet legislation

Collyer Bristow warns that, following the closure of businesses during the current and past lockdowns and increasing reliance on online operations, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) is placing a greater focus on website cookies and their compliance. Cookies are small …

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Uk Supreme Court Rules On Apparent Bias Of Arbitrators

Background The case arose from the 2010 explosion at the Deepwater Horizon oil rig and subsequent oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico, in which 11 offshore workers died. Thousands of civil claims were brought against oil giant BP, the …

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Personal loans or personal risk?

The impact of Covid-19 and the resultant financial pressure has raised the question for many entrepreneurs of how to finance their businesses. The Bank of England’s Credit Conditions Survey for Q3 revealed that banks expect the availability of lending for …

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