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  1. If you are looking to make a Lasting Power of Attorney you have the choice of doing it all yourself or paying for someone, typically a lawyer, to take you through the process.

    There are advantages of having professional help and guidance but the cost may be of concern.

    It is possible to pay a relatively small amount or more than £1,000. What you get for the money may be very different though. There are some offers which a really just filling in a form for you and nothing more.
    You can find out more about likely costs on this link.

    Do bear in mind that there may be a registration fee to pay as well which is currently £130.
  2. I will be doing at lot of work in and around London in the coming year based in Bermondsey Street SE1 at Farringdon Chambers. I was there until 2006 before I had a change of direction which ended up with the move to Wiltshire.

    One of the benefits of the move is that I will be able to extend my service to provide a new Lasting Power of Attorney service in London. to find out more CLICK HERE.

    Clients will have the choice of home visits or appointments at the London Bridge offices. Other than that things will be the same and so will the prices.
  3. You may have heard of a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA).

    This is the special version of a power of attorney that is not invalidated when the donor (the person who is giving the powers) loses mental capacity.

    It s quite possible to make one yourself but many people find the '12 plus page' form daunting and whilst the instructions and guidance provided by the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) is good it is a large body of information and some people really struggle with it.

    In addition important decisions need to be made and guidance on good and bad, practical and impractical powers and restrictions can be very helpful.

    If a mistake is made on the the LPA form it will be is rejected by the OPG and a re-submission will be required and a new registration fee is payable. In some cases the delay may be critical as the donor may lose capacity in the meantime and then no LPA can be made and an application to the Court of Protection may be necessary.

    If you want to find out more about Lasting Power of Attorney you can check this link

    Follow this link for further information on LPAs and the Lasting Power of Attorney home visit service.
  4. I have written a new pair of complementary articles about the Cheque Rule and some examples of it being used.

    For those of you who don’t know is the bit of law that relates to the additional contract that comes in to force by writing the cheque and how this gives certain advantages over suing for on the original contract.

    The only defences available are very limited and would not apply to any normal business dispute.

    There are links to both here:

    The Cheque Rule: what happens if the cheque bounces

    Cheque Rule examples

    if you have any comments or questions feel free to ask here.
  5. There is news today that George Osborne is planning to make Employment Tribunal cases harder to start for disgruntled employees.

    The ideas floated seem to include quite a high fee (£250) to lodge a claim and maybe £1,000 or more to take it all the way to a hearing.

    The other main plank is to go back to two years being the qualifying period.

    Before all you employers start cheering and sack your employment lawyer there is a catch here really.

    If someone believes they have a good case they will probably start it anyway.

    If they are on Benefit they won’t have to pay the fees and perhaps most importantly discrimination is not covered by this. There is no qualifying period for it.

    You don’t even have to be in the job before you can start a discrimination action.
  6. Amongst lawyers this is one of the hottest topics for some time. The part of the Legal Services Act 2007 that allows Alernative Business Structures (ABS) to be formed is effective on 6th October (although that does not appear to have been confirmed yet).

    What is an ABS? Any approved business can offer regulated legal services and employ solicitors and barristers to do this work.

    Thus, some supermarkets are headlined to do this namely the Co-op, but not Tesco strangely enough.

    The possibilities are endless.
  7. I put my profile on Yasni a while back. I had a reason to put it there when I found it but right now I can't even remeber why I put it there.

    Question is, is there any point?

    I wonder if it helps with Google Places validation or any other element of trust within Google to have your details plastered all over the web including these less and non-effective websites?

    If you want a look here is is Bill Ryan Corsham Barristers Chambers on Yasni
  8. For many people going to court to get money you are due either as a refund or payment for work done or goods provided is a last resort. There is a fear of the court system, of the legal language, of the legal system and probably a fear of the costs involved in doing it.

    The Small Claims Track as it is properly know now (as opposed to the Small Claims Court) is generally for money claims of £5,000 or less. There are some exceptions to this though.
    The key principles in this small claims area are that:

    • the normal rules of providing and presenting evidence are relaxed and in effect the whole proceedings are more informal (in a legal sense anyway);
    • the award of costs is curtailed and are normally restricted to £80 and some travel expenses etc. The point is neither party is normally liable for the other sides legal costs if they lose.

    The effect of this is that in most cases parties are not represented by lawyers as the unrecoverable costs are prohibitive and may outweigh the value of the claim.

    This has given rise to a number of lawyers giving limited advice and assistance to claimants or defendants in these actions. This might amount to advice on drafting the claim or defence, gathering evidence and presentation of the key elements at the hearing.

    Whether or not this seems like a good idea is a matter for the party involved but if you have a £4-5,000 claim spending say £400 to £500 on legal assistance and only standing to get £80 back still might be worth doing.

    It is something I can help with too.

    Bill Ryan

    Direct Access Barrister
  9. It is a fairly new thing so no surprise that most people who know what barrister's do still think you need to go to a solicitor to get a barrister work for you.

    You can find out more on this link: direct public access barristers