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Deed signature – witness and signatory

 A recent HC case considered the somewhat narrow point of the status of commission paid to a mortgage broker. What practitioners will find of wider interest from the judgment is the court’s view on the execution of a deed.
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Law Commission – e-signatures

 It would be easy to dismiss the above case as merely a HC judgment. However, the decision reflects the general direction of travel regarding electronic signatures. The Law Commission has recently confirmed that electronic signatures can be used to sign formal legal contracts under English law.
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Electronic signatures – valid?

 A recent HC judgment should strike fear into the hearts of property lawyers. 
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Injunctions against persons unknown – use in fraud cases

We reported in our September 2019 edition (p25) about the use of injunctions against persons unknown as a potential remedy in trespass cases. An article discusses the use of this remedy in a recent case involving ‘push payment fraud’.
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Buyout obligation - not triggered until price determined

The CA has reached a common-sense decision in relation to buying out an outgoing partner's share. The case involved a family-owned agricultural partnership agreement which provided that on retirement or death of a partner, the ongoing partners would buy out the outgoing share by the mechanism of a put and call option. The partnership agreement required an initial upfront payment followed by the balance in instalments. The first instalment was to be paid approximately four months after the departure of the outgoing partner but if unpaid the entire balance would become immediately repayable.

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Contracts – implied terms

We reported in our March 2019 edition (p2) on the case of Wells v Devani [2019] in which the SC confirmed that it will imply a term into a contract to give it business efficacy.
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Companies House – proposed changes

The 2017 national risk assessment of money laundering and terrorist financing identified that the formation of trusts and companies is being used to ‘facilitate high-end money laundering by hiding beneficial ownership, undermining due diligence checks and frustrating law enforcement investigations. 
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Arbitration proceedings – extensions of time?

The CA has permitted a claim for arbitration to be issued out of time, which is unusual. The terms under which a dispute may be referred to arbitration will be set out in the arbitration agreement, many of which contain a strict time limit for issuing a claim. Often the time can be as little as 14 to 28 days, which can be onerous especially if the proceedings are an appeal. This can lead to claims being issued out of time, typically if the time limits are not clear.
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Guarantees – test extended

A recent HC case considered the common situation where a company director gave personal guarantees in relation to loans provided to a limited company (interestingly, a law firm which had gone into liquidation).
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Disclosure letter – can be rectified

When the shares, business or assets of a private limited company are sold, the seller prepares a disclosure letter which includes general and specific disclosures regarding the warranties that the seller is giving in the share purchase agreement (SPA). Usually the buyer agrees that the seller will not be liable for breach of warranty in relation to matters contained in the disclosure letter.
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Most-read articles

Civil partnerships – heterosexual couples
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
The Civil Partnership (Opposite-sex Couples) Regulations 2019 are in force as of 2 December 2019 and permit heterosexual couples to enter into civil partnerships. Read more...
VAT reverse charge – postponed
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
 A useful article analyses the potential implications of the reverse charge on VAT, which was due to be introduced for specified construction services in October 2019 but which has now been... Read more...
Electronic communications – practitioners beware
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
 A useful article by Hardwicke Chambers reminds practitioners of the risks of a hasty or ill thought out email or social media post. The writer cites a situation where an email from a solicitor to... Read more...
Jurisdictional challenges – the basics
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
An article considers a recent SC case in which litigants have been criticised for the way in which jurisdictional challenges are being conducted. The case concerned a group of some 1,800 Zambian... Read more...
LiPs – tips for dealing
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
Litigants in person (LiPs) are on the increase due in part to legal aid cuts and an increase in the small claims limit. Maintaining the balance of treating LiPs fairly, while also acting in the best... Read more...
‘Elevation’ – front and rear of building
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
 A 99-year lease contained a covenant prohibiting T from making any alterations to the elevation or external decoration of the property. Read more...
L changing locks – an act of surrender?
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
There are various ways in which a leasehold estate in land may come to an end. One of these is surrender by operation of law. Sometimes the surrender of a lease does not take place by deed but is... Read more...
Beneficial ownership – reminder of key points
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
Practitioners who advise co-owners on the acquisition of property will find a recent article reviewing the case law on beneficial ownership very useful. The key points are: Read more...
Sanctions – vexatious litigant
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
In long-running divorce and financial remedy proceedings, R was found to be an ‘exceptionally vexatious litigant’ throughout. Mostyn J made a general civil restraint order and a protection from... Read more...
Disciplinary process – external bodies
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
 A useful article considers two recent cases on the issues that can arise for employers carrying out a disciplinary procedure when an external body becomes involved eg a regulatory body, police, a... Read more...

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