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Many people are reluctant to put in place a Will.  Some feel they are too young and do not wish to consider making a Will until later in life or they become seriously ill.  Others feel they have insufficient assets or are comfortable that their family will follow their instructions.   Regardless of your age or how modest or straightforward you think your estate is, we recommend all our clients put Wills in place.

When spouses separate and require financial resolution between them as a result, in Scotland they will be advised by family lawyers that they are entitled to fair division of the net matrimonial property.  In general terms matrimonial property includes all assets belonging to the parties individually or jointly which was acquired during the period of marriage and held as at the date of separation, less any debts similarly held by the parties individually or jointly as at that date, subject to a few exceptions.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                

“Intelligence is about being open minded”, the late, great Irish sports writer Con Houlihan once said.

New requirements have come into effect which will have application for many of the major commercial disputes litigated here in Scotland. These requirements aim to nudge parties away from the Court and towards Alternative Dispute Resolution (“ADR”) or settlement. Below is set out a summary of the changes and what their effect may be for those parties engaged in a commercial dispute.

While non-domiciled individuals (“non-doms”) have traditionally received favourable tax treatment in the UK, a number of reforms were announced in the 2015 summer Budget to widen the scope of the UK tax net.  Last week’s Finance Bill contains a number of provisions which bring these changes into force from 6 April 2017.

It has long been the case that human activities produce large amounts of records of what has happened and of what people have said and done. Now that so much of what people do and say is done through connected electronic devices, and so much of what happens is monitored electronically, more and more data is produced, and it is easier than ever to gather very large amounts of that data. This is further facilitated by the availability and cost of storage capacity. Taken together with the availability and cost of computing power, it is easier than ever to store and process huge volumes of data.

The introduction of 'Pursuer’s Offers' is the latest in a number of recent changes to the Court rules.  These changes come into force on 3 April 2017 and apply to both Court of Session and Sheriff Court actions.  They follow the theme of encouraging litigants to settle cases before they reach an evidential hearing in a case.

On 30 November 2016, the Scottish Law Commission (‘SLC’) published a discussion paper on penalty clauses as part of its current review of contract law in Scotland (‘2016 Discussion Paper’). It has been a long standing principle of Scots law (and the law of England and Wales) that penalty clauses are unenforceable. Identifying a need for review of this area of the law, SLC previously published a discussion paper (1997) and report (1999) on the issue which set out proposals for reform. However, following a consultation on a draft Penalty Clauses (Scotland) Bill (which took forward the recommendations made by the SLC) the Scottish Government determined that further work was required in relation to this area of the law.

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ABERDEEN OFFICE
28 Albyn Place, Aberdeen AB10 1YL
Tel: +44 1224 845845

 

INVERNESS OFFICE
Camas House, Fairways Business Park,
Inverness IV2 6AA
Tel: + 44 1463 713225