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Homeowner compensated for neighbour’s tree root damage

4th October 2013 | Dispute Resolution

A homeowner has been awarded compensation for damage caused to his property by the roots of a hedge belonging to his neighbour. The issue first arose in 2006 when the homeowner noticed cracks in his property. Structural engineers investigated and reported that the damage was most likely caused by the roots from a cypress tree hedge on the neighbour’s land. The neighbour agreed to remove the trees but the homeowner also sought damages to cover the cost of repair work, plus...


One in six SMEs worried about the future

12th August 2013 | Dispute Resolution

One in Six SMEs Worry of Financial Pressures | Middletons Solicitors | Andover Solicitors One in six small to medium-sized enterprises (SME) are worried that financial pressures could see them go out of business within the next year, according to global insurer Zurich. The figures are contained in Zurich’s SME Risk Index for Quarter 4 of last year, in which YouGov questioned decision makers at more than 500 businesses. High street retailers are among the most concerned with 21%...


Accountant must pay nearly £1m after giving negligent advice

30th July 2013 | Dispute Resolution

Negligent Advice Costs Accountant Nearly £1m | Middletons Solicitors | Andover Solicitors An accountant must pay £943,000 damages to a client after giving him negligent advice about saving tax during the sale of a business. The case involved a successful entrepreneur who was in the process of selling his company for £8.5m. He was liable to Capital Gains Tax (CGT) on 10% of that figure. He engaged an accountant to help him reduce his tax liability. The businessman was Iranian...


Negligent contractors liable for damages despite client’s failings

10th June 2013 | Dispute Resolution

Negligent Contractors Liable For Damages | Middletons Solicitors | Andover Solicitors  A contractor has been found liable for the damage caused by a factory fire even though the client was partly responsible for what happened. The contractor had been hired to refurbish a factory roof. This required providing a suspended scaffold cage which contained gas-powered heaters. Part way through the contract a fire broke out causing extensive damage to the factory. The evidence indicated...


Bullied shop worker awarded compensation for harassment

21st May 2013 | Dispute Resolution

Harassment Claim Awards Bullied Shop Worker | Middletons Solicitors | Andover Solicitors A shop assistant who suffered psychiatric damage and attempted to commit suicide after being bullied by her manager has been awarded £13,565 compensation. The 28-year-old woman worked for a year as a customer assistant for the Co-op Group Ltd. She claimed that during this time her store manager often shouted at her and was verbally abusive towards her. On one occasion when she was not at work,...


Directors guilty of contempt after disposing of firm’s goodwill

22nd April 2013 | Dispute Resolution

Directors Guilty of Contempt After Disposing of Goodwill | Middletons Law | Andover Solicitors Two directors have been found guilty of contempt of court after disposing of their company’s goodwill assets in breach of a freezing order. The two directors were involved in a family based agency which sold mechanical breakdown insurance policies. An insurance company became unhappy with the way the directors ran the agency and blamed them for causing it to make substantial losses....


Pregnant woman with learning difficulties ‘can make choices’

22nd March 2013 | Dispute Resolution, Family Matters

A woman with learning difficulties is capable of deciding for herself whether to continue with her pregnancy, the Court of Protection has ruled. The Court oversees the rights and welfare of people who lack the mental capacity to make their own decisions. It was called on to consider the case of a woman whose learning difficulties place her in the bottom one per cent of people in terms of intelligence. She is 18 weeks pregnant. Concerns were raised as to whether the Court should...


Only tax advice from lawyers is ‘protected from disclosure’

8th March 2013 | Dispute Resolution

Only Lawyers Tax Advice Is Disclosure Protected | Middletons Solicitors | Andover Solicitors  When you consult a solicitor, your conversations and the advice you receive are covered by legal professional privilege. This means all your communications are confidential and protected from disclosure – even to official bodies like HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC). However, this protection relating to legal advice is only available when consulting lawyers – it does not extend to other...


Surveyor found negligent when providing ‘tick box’ valuations

1st March 2013 | Dispute Resolution

Surveyor Fell Below Standards In Negligence Case | Middletons Solicitors | Andover Solicitors  The danger of tick box valuations was highlighted in a recent professional negligence case involving a firm of property surveyors. The court outlined what should happen when issues arose during valuations that could not be fully explained using automated systems. The case involved a firm called E.Surv Ltd which had been commissioned by an American mortgage lender called GMAC to value...


Awards for unfair dismissal to be limited to one year’s salary

18th February 2013 | Dispute Resolution

Awards for Unfair Dismissal To Be Limited | Middletons Solicitors | Andover Solicitors  The Government has announced that awards for unfair dismissal are to be limited to one year’s salary. However, the overall cap will remain at £72,300. Employment relations minister Jo Swinson said the change would be introduced in an amendment to the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Bill, which is currently going through parliament. Ms Swinson said: “Employment tribunals are costly for...