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By Euan Smith, Associate


While it only seems like the other week that we were deciding whether Scotland should remain in the UK, on 23 June, we will be deciding whether the UK should remain in the EU.  
Earlier this year David Cameron argued he had achieved success in agreeing a deal for the UK’s position within the EU to be adjusted in certain respects.  Broadly speaking, the areas forming the subject of the deal were; economic governance, competitiveness, immigration and sovereignty. 

In our update last week we reported on the Chancellor’s headline Budget announcement regarding Capital Gains Tax (“CGT”) and the impact this may have on property investors. As well as the major changes to CGT, the Budget also introduced an important new type of ISA, changes to Income Tax bands and significant extensions to Entrepreneurs’ Relief.

Owning property abroad is increasingly popular – whether as an investment, holiday home, or retirement property. Spain is particularly a popular choice for a place in the sun.

Individuals who own or who are considering purchasing property in Spain need to be aware of some potentially unexpected legal implications. Three of the main considerations are discussed below.

By Eric Gilligan, Partner and head of Stronachs’ employment team

The management of employees on sick leave, particularly long-term sick leave, is a significant challenge for employers. Quite apart from the difficulties arising from the requirement to cover the work the sick employee is not undertaking and to ensure that colleagues are not overloaded and that their morale is not adversely affected the issue of engagement with long-term sick employees gives rise to particular risks. These are often compounded if the employee experiences mental health difficulties such as anxiety or depression whereby interactions with management may be negatively perceived with accusations or perhaps even claims arising of disability discrimination (of various types) and of constructive dismissal.

From 6 April 2016, with a few exceptions, all UK companies will require to keep a register of persons of significant control (PSC Register). 

The Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015 came into force in March, amending the Companies Act 2006, to create this requirement which aims to increase the transparency of UK corporate structures.  The requirement extends to companies with charitable status and unlimited companies, but most publically traded companies will be exempt.  LLPs will be subject to substantially similar requirements under separate regulations.

By Annika Neukirch, Trainee Solicitor

With the coming of spring there are a number of changes to employment law. Stronachs’ David Chalmers previously explained the introduction of the National Living Wage from 1 April. Other changes coming into force this spring are increases to the maximum compensation amounts and redundancy payments, and the introduction of penalties for employers in relation to unpaid tribunal awards and settlements. Looking further into the future, the Budget 2016 outlines the plans to introduce employer national insurance contributions in relation to termination payments.

The Court of Session has just issued a timely reminder about how a very simple (and avoidable) administrative slip can be fundamentally fatal to certain types of contractual claim.

The headline Budget announcement that CGT will be cut to 20% for trustees and higher rate taxpayers and to 10% for basic rate taxpayers may have raised a cheer from investment property owners in Aberdeen. As always, the exceptions are contained in the detailed budget summary.

The summary provides that current rates of CGT (28% and 18%) will remain for residential properties so the move will not assist owners of investment properties and those with second homes.

Chambers UK 2018

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