Stephen Wilson, Executive Head of Claims at Sills & Betteridge and accredited Fellow of APIL

Association of Personal Injury Lawyers launches “Compensation Explained”

The Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL) have recently launched what they describe as their “latest public information venture”, an online booklet called “Compensation explained” which is a guide to personal injury compensation, its purpose, and its value to society. Who are APIL? APIL is a national not-for-profit membership group that was founded in 1990 by a group of barristers and solicitors who wanted to improve the services that were provided for victims of negligence and fight and campaign for the rights of injured people. They now have more than 3,5000 members and are “dedicated to changing the law, protecting and enhancing access to justice, and improving the services provided…

Requesting Judicial Assessment of merits at preliminary hearings

The Employment Tribunals Rules of Procedure provide that a Tribunal shall wherever practicable and appropriate encourage the use by the parties of the service of ACAS, judicial or other mediation, or other means of resolving their disputes by agreement. In October 2016 the President of the Employment Tribunals in England and Wales issued Presidential Guidance – Protocol on Judicial Assessments. The Protocol creates a confidential process whereby an Employment Judge can offer an earlier assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of the parties’ respective cases. Judicial assessment involves evaluating the strength of the parties’ cases. Employment Judges will use their skill and experience in doing this, whilst remaining wholly impartial.…

Top five ways to raise investment for your business

Anyone who is planning to start up a brand new business or expand their existing business knows how crucial it is to raise finance in order to do so. There are many things you need to consider when raising capital, and there are many ways to do so. This article looks at five of the most common methods, which are: Selling Shares Bank Loans Grants Crowdfunding Borrowing from friends and family Selling Shares One of the most traditional ways of getting money (or more money) into your business is by selling shares to investors. This is only available to limited companies, and means that people invest money in to your…

Further sentencing changes to come in 2018 and beyond

Part 4 of our review of road traffic reform in 2017 In part 1 of our series on road traffic reform in 2017 we set out the new penalties drivers are facing following a number of sentencing reforms. In this article we highlight on going consultations and proposals for further reforms in 2018 and beyond. Causing death by dangerous driving currently attracts a maximum sentence of 14 years – the government has published proposals that drivers caught speeding, using a phone or under influence drink/drugs could now face life sentences if involved in a fatal collision. There is some debate as to whether this reform is necessary as prosecutors already…

haulage vehicle

2017 a year in review for the Haulage industry

A four part review of Road Traffic related legal news in 2017 – Part 3 In 2017 it was announced that DVSA officers will gain increased powers to impose fines for breaches of driver’s hours offences up from £300 for a single day to a possible total fine of £1500 for any five days where breaches have occurred in the last 28 days. This applies regardless of whether the offence was committed in the UK or abroad. Non UK drivers will also be subject to the fines and will require to pay on the spot. The start date for these fines is yet to be announced but will be widely…

How did the Taxi industry fare in 2017?

A four part review of Road Traffic law news in 2017 – Part 2 The big story for 2017 is Transport for London’s (TFL) decision to revoke Uber’s licence. Initially this decision will not result in any change. The Uber TFL licence was due to expire on 30 September however the company will be able to continue to operate until all appeals are exhausted. Given the high-profile nature of this decision, not only in terms of the UK market but also the potential impact internationally we can expect the appeal process to be lengthy and exhaustive. Recent reports are indicating that this initial decision marks the end of the beginning…

2017 changes to penalties for road traffic offences

A four part review of Road Traffic law news in 2017 – Part 1 2017 has been a busy year for road traffic law reforms with no shortage of opportunities to fall foul of road traffic rules (Sky News reported in October that a road traffic penalty is issued every 2.5 seconds with 30% of drivers receiving one penalty annually). The following sentencing guidelines have been amended this year: Careless Driving The approach to sentencing has changed with a more sophisticated analysis of culpability and harm to determine the starting point of a sentence. The new approach addresses a potential anomaly in the previous guidance where low culpability but serious…

New web based transport law information service for businesses and professional drivers

The law is constantly changing with increasingly severe punishments and penalties particularly in the context of road traffic law and health and safety. The impact of this punitive approach to policy making is being felt quite acutely by businesses that have a haulage or fleet operation, or require employees to drive in any capacity. Sills & Betteridge has launched a new and comprehensive web based transport law information service for businesses and professional drivers. This year has brought a number of important reforms aimed at improving road safety including increasing penalty points for using a mobile phone and the recent announcement that drivers involved in fatal road traffic accidents will…

What will happen to my business in a divorce?

Divorce can be emotionally draining for everyone concerned. However, it can be even worse when a business is involved, and has the potential to be financially draining as well, not just for the couple seeking a divorce, but for many other people too. In England, Wales and Northern Ireland, any business interests that one of the spouses has can usually be taken into account during the divorce. However, whilst this sounds scary, in reality what often happens is that the court aims to leave the business owner with their business untouched, and as a result will compensate the other spouse by say giving them a greater share of other assets,…

What are the grounds for divorce?

If you are considering a divorce or have definitely decided that a divorce is the only option available to you, then it is quite likely that you are feeling very emotional, and also that you don’t really know what the next step is. This article sets out one of the first things you need to establish in order to begin divorce proceedings. In order to start divorce proceedings, you will need to file a divorce petition at court. In order to do that, you will need to have been married for at least a year (you cannot get a divorce if you have been married for less than a year),…