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Procedure

Construction – adjudication costs

If there is an adjudication in a construction contract dispute, can the referring party recover its adjudication costs?  

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Debt claims – pre-action protocol

The new pre-action protocol for debt claims against individuals came into force on 1 October 2017. It applies to all debt claims brought by businesses (including sole traders and public bodies) against individuals (including sole traders). But, the protocol does not apply to: debt claims against debtors who are not individuals; debt claims covered by other pre-action protocols (eg mortgage arrears); or claims for the recovery of taxes and duties. Key stages of the debt protocol are: 

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Bookmark – litigant in person

We do not normally recommend DIY guides but we are very impressed with ‘How to be a Litigant in Person in the New Legal World’ by Michael Langford. It really is an excellent, and practical, guide to litigation (of all sorts).  

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SAR – judge’s notes

Can a judge’s handwritten notes be disclosable under a subject access request?

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SARs – revised Code

The Information Commissioners Office has updated its code of practice on subject access requests. This is largely to reflect the recent court decisions (noted in our April 2017 issue, p31). In particular, the code has altered its guidance on when a data controller can claim that it will require a ‘disproportionate effort’ to comply with the SAR.

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Arbitration – time limit

The time limit for challenging an arbitration award is 28 days. This short time limit reflects the underlying policy of Arbitration Act 1996, namely the finality of arbitration awards. Note that the time limit of 28 days runs from the date the award is made (not the date on which the award is released to the parties). This is a very important point, since in commercial arbitrations there will often be a delay before the award is released to the parties. This is particularly so if the arbitrator’s fees are outstanding.

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Pleading – protocol compliance?

There is still confusion about whether it is necessary for a claimant to state in the claim form (or particulars of claim) whether they have complied with the relevant protocol.

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RCJ – outdoor clerks

Are we seeing the end of the outdoor clerking profession? The introduction of electronic filing and working (CE-File) in the Rolls Building (soon to be called the Business and Property Courts) has virtually abolished the need for outdoor clerks in those courts – and it must surely be a matter of time before others (eg QBD, Senior Costs Office, and the Mayor and City of London Court) follow suit. With CE-File there is simply no need for outdoor clerking.

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Data protection – subject access requests

These days, subject access requests (SARs) are becoming increasingly common as a civil litigation ploy to obtain information that might not otherwise be disclosable (or to get it disclosed at an earlier stage). In short, SARs have become a tactical tool in litigation. 

Making a valid SAR is straightforward and inexpensive. There is no prescribed format provided it is in writing – indeed the code of practice specifies that data controllers may not insist on the use of a particular form. A written SAR can be made by post, e-mail, fax or even social media. It does not have to be labelled as an SAR, nor make any reference to DPA 1998. Generally, the maximum fee that can be charged by data controllers for dealing with an SRA is £10; a response must be provided promptly (and in any event within 40 days).

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Judgment – asset-stripping

To what extent can a judgment debtor dissipate (or strip) assets to avoid them being available to meet the judgment debt?

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Page 5 of 46

Most-read articles

Trustees – duty to beneficiaries
Wednesday, 11 July 2018
Trustees cannot simply ignore beneficiaries’ request for information about a trust, the High Court has held. In this case, the trust property was a farm outside Cardiff. Read more...
Conveyancing searches – disbursements?
Wednesday, 11 July 2018
Should electronic property searches be treated as disbursements for VAT purposes? Alternatively, are they part of the legal service provided, and so subject to VAT? Read more...
Professional – update
Wednesday, 11 July 2018
From December 2018 there will be new rules requiring firms to publish prices for conveyancing, probate, motoring offences and immigration, as well as the price for bringing ET claims.  Read more...
Service mistake – discretion?
Wednesday, 11 July 2018
To what extent do you have a duty to point out the other side’s procedural errors (as part of your obligation to comply with the ‘overriding objective’)? Read more...
Exiting the Portal – reasonable
Wednesday, 11 July 2018
Insurers should be very careful about making allegations (for instance, at Stage 2 of the EL/PL Protocol), especially if they could be interpreted as allegations of ‘dishonesty’. Read more...
Airbnb – breach of lease
Wednesday, 11 July 2018
It now seems clear that an Airbnb short let will be in breach of a typical long lease. Read more...
GDPR – data rooms
Wednesday, 11 July 2018
If L is planning to sell a property subject to leases, then almost certainly a data room will be set up containing all relevant documents. Read more...
Rights of way – public
Wednesday, 11 July 2018
There are four categories of public rights of way: Read more...
Financial remedies – company assets
Wednesday, 11 July 2018
A recent ruling illustrates when a court can treat a company-owned asset as as a matrimonial asset. Read more...
GDPR – references
Wednesday, 11 July 2018
GDPR impacts on the giving of references: Read more...

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