Image

The Dangerous Side of Social Media; Think Before You Post!

Social networking has shot up in the past decade with people taking to social media to connect with one another, engage with news, share information and entertain themselves. There are various social media platforms and people are choosing to contact each other on those platforms using messages, photos and videos more frequently.

The benefits of the internet and social media are vast but there is also a dangerous side and we are seeing that more and more in the legal profession.
Social media posts that may have been posted in the heat of the moment when emotions were running high have been brought into court proceedings to be used as evidence of behaviour, relationships and events, and this ‘evidence’ has been judged in court. This is now commonplace and can have damaging consequences, sometimes affecting the outcome of a case.

It is extremely important to take a minute to think before posting, and to avoid getting into arguments over social media. Not only could it potentially damage any court case that you may have going on, or any future case for that matter, but if your children use social media remember that they may see negative posts and this could cause additional upset.

It is not enough to rely on privacy settings; if you do not want the public to see your post then do not post it! No matter how much you lock your account down, or how careful you think you are with your friends, the reality is that if you post it, it will be seen!

If you’ve got an issue and need someone to talk to, and some advice, do not post it on social media, contact us to arrange an appointment so that you can get some proper legal advice!

JNP Legal offer a variety of legal services. Our Merthyr, Nelson & Llanishen office is open Monday to Friday 9am – 5pm and our Merthyr Tydfil Office is open 9am – 12pm every Saturday morning.
If you are unable to attend our offices we would be more than happy to arrange a home appointment, where convenient.
We value our clients and pride ourselves on our ability to offer a first class service.
If you require our assistance with any legal matters please call us on 01685 350421 (Merthyr Tydfil Office) 01443 450561 (Nelson Office) or 02920 763211 (Cardiff Office) or contact us via email on Law@jnplegal.org.

Advertisements
Image

Grandparents : Seeking Contact with your Grandchildren

In recent weeks, viewers of Coronation Street have been following the story line of Eva handing her new born baby, Susie, over to her step-sister Toyah. The plan failed after a lot of guilt for all people concerned and upon the discovery of the biological father’s death.

On hearing the news that he, Johny Conner, was the paternal grandfather of Susie he announced he intended to fight for custody of his late son’s baby daughter.

He sought advice from a solicitor and applied for a Child Arrangements Order. Eva was distraught at the possibility of giving up her daughter for a second time.

Child Arrangements Orders are Court Orders regulating who a child or children live with or spend time with following e.g. parental separation or in this case, where Johny believed that Eva is not fit to have care of a child which she has previously tried to give away.

Unlike parents, grandparents do not have an automatic right to apply for a Child Arrangements Order although there are exceptions to that rule.

It is generally considered to be in the best interests of a child to have a relationship with other family members as well as their parents/carers. On that basis, the vast majority of grandparents would succeed in securing leave to make an application. It is then for the court to determine the application for a Child Arrangements Order.

If you need legal advice or representation in respect of a family matter and want to know whether or not you are eligible for legal aid please contact our family department.

JNP Legal are leading law specialists who can assist with all your legal needs in a discreet and professional manner.

We are open Monday to Friday, 9am – 5pm in our Merthyr Tydfil, Nelson and Llanishen offices and to ensure maximum convenience to all of you that may need our help and guidance on a Saturday morning 9am – 12pm in our Merthyr Tydfil office.

We offer home visits to those clients who are unable to attend our offices in person and we pride ourselves on offering first class client care.

If you need assistance in relation to any of the issues raised in this blog please call us on 01685 350421 or 01443 450561 or E Mail: Law@jnplegal.org and we will do our very best to provide you with the legal assistance you require.

JNP Legal offer a variety of legal services. Our Merthyr, Nelson & Llanishen office is open Monday to Friday 9am – 5pm and our Merthyr Tydfil Office is open 9am – 12pm every Saturday morning.
If you are unable to attend our offices we would be more than happy to arrange a home appointment, where convenient.
We value our clients and pride ourselves on our ability to offer a first class service.
If you require our assistance with any legal matters please call us on 01685 350421 (Merthyr Tydfil Office) 01443 450561 (Nelson Office) or 02920 763211 (Cardiff Office) or contact us via email on Law@jnplegal.org.

Vicarious Liability: when is an employer accountable for the actions of their employees?

Firstly, what is Vicarious Liability?
An employer can be liable for the acts and/or omissions of its ‘Employees’ provided these took place during the course of employment.

Recent Developments
A recent Court of Appeal ruling has dealt with the law relating to vicarious liability and a company’s use of contractors.

The case in question, Barclays Bank PLC v Various Claimants, related to an appeal by Barclays Bank on its liability for sexual assaults that were said to have been committed by a doctor it has contracted to complete medical examinations of its staff. The bank specified the nature, time, place and the examiner and there was therefore some degree of control and knowledge.

Following the death of the doctor the police found evidence of sexual assaults during the examinations.

Various members of staff sought damages from the bank on the basis that they were vicariously liable for the assaults on the basis that the doctor’s work for them was akin to employment. The bank argued that the doctor was self employed as an independent contractor and as such they were not liable for his actions.

The High Court had previously agreed with the Claimants that the bank was vicariously liable and the Court of Appeal upheld that decision. The Court of Appeal discussed the changing nature of work which required a more flexible approach to vicarious liability. Given that the doctor had died and his estate had already been distributed the bank was the only viable entity able to provide compensation which will have, no doubt, had some bearing on the Court’s decision.

Important points for employers
As well as the above case, there have been other recent examples of the Court taking a more flexible approach to find vicarious liability if it considers it fair and just to do so. It is important that all persons working for a company, even those not classically considered ‘employees’ are aware of their obligations.

JNP Legal offer a wide range of legal services. We have offices in Merthyr Tydfil, Nelson and Llanishen. Our offices are open Monday- Friday 9am-5pm with our Merthyr Tydfil office also open between 9am – 12pm on a Saturday for your convenience.

Our qualified solicitors would be more than happy to assist with any legal queries you have.

If you require our assistance with any legal matters please call us on 01685 350421 (Merthyr Tydfil Office) 01443 450561 (Nelson Office) or 02920 763211 (Cardiff Office) or contact us via email on Law@jnplegal.org.

Image

LAW FIRM NAMED IN LIST OF HIGHEST ACHIEVERS FOR NATIONAL CHARITY CAMPAIGN

A LAW firm based in Merthyr Tydfil has raised over £4,000 for charity this year after taking part in a will-writing campaign which asks solicitors to write wills for local people and instead, ask only for a voluntary donation.

JNP Legal, which has branches in Nelson and Llanishen, have taken part in the annual Will Aid scheme and raised an impressive £4,420 in the month-long fundraiser. This is the second time they have taken part in Will Aid and they were the highest fundraising firm in Mid Glamorgan for 2017. Since they started taking part they have raised £31,483.

Loran Beynon, from the firm commented: “Our team has thoroughly enjoyed participating in Will Aid and we have worked very hard to promote the campaign.

“We like having the opportunity to help more than one charity during the same campaign. The scheme provides a strong incentive for people to make wills.

“We are happy to donate our time towards Will Aid. It is a worthy cause and worth supporting. There are benefits for the firm in encouraging will making and other new business. We would recommend that other law firms get involved.”

Paul Morgan from the British Red Cross paid the firm a visit to present them with a certificate.

He said: “We are very grateful to JNP Legal and the Will Aid scheme for this generous contribution.

“The Red Cross uses donations to reach people in crisis, here in the UK and all around the world.

“£300 could feed ten families in Syria for a month. £80 could help train four people in life-saving first aid skills here in the UK. And with £1,000 our UK volunteers could give five people the support they need to readjust to life at home following a spell in hospital.”

Lawyers wrote dozens of wills during the month of November, generously giving their time for free for the whole month.

Will Aid, which is celebrating its 30th year since launching, is a charity will-writing scheme that raises money for nine wonderful charities: ActionAid, British Red Cross, Christian Aid, NSPCC, Save The Children, Sightsavers, Age UK, SCIAF (Scotland) and Trocaire (Northern Ireland).

Peter de Vena Franks, campaign director for Will Aid said: “Will Aid has made an amazing contribution to the work of the nine participating charities and last year was no exception. Thanks to the commitment of local solicitors that took part in this year’s Will Aid, many people both in the UK and abroad will receive life-changing support and local people who used the scheme have the peace of mind thanks to having a professionally drawn up will.

“I would like to offer my heartfelt thanks to JNP Legal and let them know that thanks to them, lives will change for the better and people who need it will continue to receive the help and support that the charities work so hard to provide.

“Solicitors raised an incredible amount of money in 2017, but sadly there is always much more demand for Will Aid than we can meet. You have the chance to help us celebrate 30 years since the launch of Will Aid by signing up and donating your time in 2018. Being part of Will Aid will raise the profile of your firm in your local community and bring new clients to your door, all whilst supporting nine wonderful UK charities.

Will Aid will run again in November 2018. Find out more by visiting http://www.willaid.org.uk.

ENDS

For more information, photographs, quotes or localised statistics please contact the Will Aid press team on pr@willaid.org.uk or call 01473 276127

Notes for Editors
• November is Will Aid’s annual UK-wide fundraising campaign involving nine of the UK’s leading charities that share the proceeds: ActionAid, Age UK, British Red Cross, Christian Aid, NSPCC, Save the Children, Sightsavers, SCIAF (Scotland) and Trocaire (N. Ireland).
• Will Aid has been running since 1988 and has run every November since 2008. It is the most successful charity Will-writing scheme in the UK, open to all adults. The campaign has encouraged over 300,000 people to write their will with a qualified, regulated and insured solicitor and in so doing has raised over £20 million in donations. The suggested voluntary donation is £95 for a single will and £150 for a pair of mirror wills.
• For more information on the Will Aid research or a digital version of this press release, visit http://www.willaid.org.uk/press

Image

Injury Prevention Day 2018

As you may be aware from previous posts, JNP Legal is a member of the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL), a national not-for-profit membership group representing injured people.

As part of the campaigns supported by APIL, the third Wednesday in August each year is focussed on Injury Prevention Day, when APIL asks people to consider what they can do to help prevent harm. This year Injury Prevention Day is Wednesday 15th August 2018.

APIL’s focus this year is on avoiding needless injuries by asking occupants of vehicles to ensure vehicle head restraints are properly adjusted. Head restraints that are properly adjusted may help to prevent occupants who are involved in low speed collisions from suffering neck and back injuries as a result.

APIL have created an illustration explaining how a car headrest should be positioned, which can be accessed at https://www.apil.org.uk/injury-prevention-day.aspx. They have asked that everyone complete the #headresttest to ensure that headrests are properly positioned. By ensuring that headrests are in the correct position, car users can help to protect themselves from injury.

Further information in relation to APIL’s campaign activity is also available on their website http://www.apil.org.uk/.

JNP Legal offer a variety of legal services. If you require our assistance with any legal matter please call us on 01685 350421 (Merthyr Tydfil Office) 01443 450561 (Nelson Office) or 02920 763211 (Cardiff Office) or contact us via email on Law@jnplegal.org.

Image

Ant McPartlin’s wife to get ‘Every Penny’ In Divorce Settlement?

Ant McPartlin’s wife to get ‘every penny’ in divorce settlement?
It has been difficult to escape the headlines recently regarding TV presenter Ant McPartlin’s divorce from his wife Lisa Armstrong. The couple announced their separation back in January 2018 however matters seem to be becoming more and more contentious.

Ant has been in the headlines a lot recently after reportedly getting hooked on prescription drugs and alcohol following a knee operation last summer leading to a stint in rehab, and returning to rehab this year after having been arrested for drink-driving.

There has been much speculation as to what Lisa Armstrong will get out of the divorce settlement. The couple were married in 2006 although they were in a relationship for a number of years before marriage. The couple have no children together. Due to the fact that they were in a long relationship and there are no children to consider, the starting point will be a 50:50 division of all assets. It is unknown as to whether or not they had a prenup prior to marriage but if they did then that could alter the division of assets.

It has been reported that Lisa Armstrong has said that she wants to take Ant ‘for every penny’ and that she ‘refuses to go quietly’. They were said to have clashed when Ant asked Lisa to have her jewellery valued as part of the settlement and Lisa refused; it is unknown how true this is however a jewellery collection is seen as an asset and will need to be considered.

According to the press, Ant is now in a new relationship with the couple’s ex PA, Anne-Marie Corbett and Lisa has expressed her heart break on social media in respect of the rumours. Although Lisa may be extremely annoyed with the rumours in respect of Ant’s new relationship; it is very unlikely that this will have any bearing on the financial settlement that she will receive.

The reality is that Lisa will not be walking away with every penny of the marriage however she is likely to walk away with a significant settlement as she could be entitled to half of the estimated £62 million fortune. It will be interesting to see what happens there.

Communication between the couple is said to be difficult at the moment, as can be expected. It is reported that they are communicating only via lawyers and through members of Ant’s management team. Whilst it is hoped that matters can be dealt with amicably, unfortunately it is not always the way. If you are going through a break up and require advice, support and assistance contact our financial remedy department and we will be with you every step of the way.

JNP Legal offer a variety of legal services. Our Merthyr, Nelson & Llanishen office is open Monday to Friday 9am – 5pm and our Merthyr Tydfil Office is open 9am – 12pm every Saturday morning.

If you are unable to attend our offices we would be more than happy to arrange a home appointment, where convenient.
We value our clients and pride ourselves on our ability to offer a first class service.

If you require our assistance with any legal matters please call us on 01685 350421 (Merthyr Tydfil Office) 01443 450561 (Nelson Office) or 02920 763211 (Cardiff Office) or contact us via email on Law@jnplegal.org.

Image

Who Qualifies for Legal Aid

Funding a case, whether it be divorce, child arrangements, care proceedings or criminal matters, can be daunting. Most people have heard of legal aid, which is government funding for your legal fees, but what most people don’t know is – how do I get it?

Unfortunately, the provision for legal aid in most cases were massively scaled back in 2013, with the Legal Aid Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act. This Act of Parliament massively reduced which cases legal aid are available for. This had a massive impact on family law as a general practice area. Legal aid is provided a government body – the Legal Aid Agency.

Care Proceedings

If you have children services involvement with your family, then have no fear, if care proceedings are issued in respect of your children, or you have to have what’s called a ‘legal meeting’ in respect of your children, then you automatically qualify for legal aid, irrespective of what you earn.

Child Arrangement Orders

In terms of getting legal aid for child arrangements where there is no children’s services involvement, it is slightly more complicated. One of the only ways to obtain legal aid in these at is if you can demonstrate that you have been victim of or are at risk of suffering domestic violence, or in children cases, that the case is for the purpose of protecting a child who would otherwise be at risk of abuse.

The Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 defines domestic violence as ‘any incidents, or pattern of incidents, of controlling, coercive or threatening behaviour, violence or abuse (whether psychological, physical, sexual, financial or emotional) between individuals who are associated with each other.’ However, you will be required to provide evidence of this violence and only certain forms of this evidence will be acceptable. This includes, an unspent conviction for a domestic violence offence, a protective injunction made in the last five years, or a report from an health professional that an examination within the last five years showed injuries condition consistent with those of a victim of domestic violence.

In addition to this, you must also fall within the financial eligibility test. You will need to show that you cannot afford the legal cost of the case. You will be required to give information about your income, benefits, savings, property and shares and those of your partner.

There’s an online calculator for legal aid which can be found on their government website. The link can be found here: https://checklegalaid.service.gov.uk/legal-aid-available

Criminal

If you find yourself involved in a criminal matter where you might need legal aid, the test is slightly different. You need to be in receipt of passporting benefit, and if your matter is in the magistrates court you will need to earn less than £239.00 a week.

At JNP Legal, we work with the Legal Aid Agency in order to obtain funding for our clients. We are leading law specialists who can assist with all your legal needs in a discreet and professional manner. We offer a variety of legal services. Our Merthyr, Nelson and Llanishen office is open Monday to Friday 9am-5pm and our Merthyr Tydfil Office is open 9am-12pm every Saturday morning.

We value our clients and pride ourselves on our ability to offer a first class service. If you require our assistance with any legal matters please call us on 01685 350421 (Merthyr), 01443 450561 (Nelson) or 02920 763211 (Llanishen) or contact us via email Law@jnplegal.org

JNP Legal offer a variety of legal services. Our Merthyr, Nelson & Llanishen office is open Monday to Friday 9am – 5pm and our Merthyr Tydfil Office is open 9am – 12pm every Saturday morning.
If you are unable to attend our offices we would be more than happy to arrange a home appointment, where convenient.
We value our clients and pride ourselves on our ability to offer a first class service.
If you require our assistance with any legal matters please call us on 01685 350421 (Merthyr Tydfil Office) 01443 450561 (Nelson Office) or 02920 763211 (Cardiff Office) or contact us via email on Law@jnplegal.org.