Monthly Archives: November 2017

Inheritance (Provision for Family Dependents) Act 1975: A Caution Over Moral Claims

In the recent case of Ball v Ball 2017 EWHC 1750 Ch, the High Court rejected a claim under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependents) Act 1975 (IPFDA) made by three adult children against their mother’s estate.
The IPFDA allows the court to provide further financial provisions for family and dependents who have been left out of a will, been left with less than they thought due, or if no will had been written prior to death. This includes, but is not limited to, the spouse of the deceased, the deceased’s children, and dependants maintained by the deceased.
In this particular case, the mother had disinherited three of her children for reporting their father to the police for indecent assault offences, for which the father was later convicted. The mother, who was not the abuser, had a clear intention for the 20 years following the …

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Statutory Demands: Creditor faces costs order even when they were entitled to serve the statutory demand

Dunhill v Hughmans (A Firm) [2017] EWHC 2073 (Ch)
The High Court has recently held that although a creditor was ‘entitled’ to serve its statutory demand when it did, it had not been ‘appropriate’ to do so. Accordingly, the creditor was liable for the debtor’s costs of applying to set aside.
The court held that the creditor was entitled to serve its statutory demand upon obtaining summary judgment. However, it went on to consider that entitlement against the appropriateness of doing so when the creditor knew the debtor was seeking permission to appeal.
Upon the debtor’s appeal being allowed, the creditor proposed withdrawing its statutory demand with no order as to costs. The court held that it was reasonable for the debtor to reject that proposal. The debtor was therefore entitled to her costs.
This is a reminder that creditors mus…

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Don’t (Let the Court) Be Blinded By Science

In this article, Family Law expert David O’Brien discusses one of his cases that brought into question the sole use of hair strand testing as determinative scientific evidence and why the results of such tests might not always be as they first seem.
I recently acted for a 37-year-old mother in care proceedings in respect of her 4th child (BB). The mother’s three other children had been permanently removed from her care during two previous court cases.
Sadly, the mother had been addicted to amphetamines from the age of 16 and had a long history of alcohol misuse and mental health difficulties, with suicidal and self-harm ideations.
All of the mother’s relationships had been categorised by domestic violence and the police had been called to over seven “domestics” in the year prior to the mother discovering she was pregnant with BB. The…

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A Review of Landlords’ Right to Rent Obligations

The Immigration Act 2014 saw the introduction of new Right to Rent obligations for landlords and managing agents, who are now required to check that their tenants are legally eligible to live in the rented property. Failure to comply could see landlords fined up to £3,000 and following The Immigration Act 2016 amendments, possibly convicted of a criminal offence.
18 months on from the Act, the House of Commons briefing paper has highlighted concerns about private landlords’ awareness of these duties.
There are three types of ‘rights to rent’ under the 2014 Act:

The ‘unlimited’ right to rent which applies to British citizens, EES and Swiss nationals and those who have been given indefinite leave to remain in the UK;
The ‘time-limited’ right to rent which applies to those who are entitled to remain in …

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