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The latest legal articles and publications from Mills & Reeve.

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Part 26A scheme not within scope of Lugano Convention

The insolvency criteria for instigating a Part 26A scheme had the effect that Part 26A schemes fall within the insolvency carve out contained in the Lugano Convention and so are not within its scope.

Morgan Bowen

Thu, 8 Apr 2021 11:16:18 GMT+00:00

Finally a conclusion to 16 year-long CVA

Administrators of TXU UK Ltd applied to conclude a 16 year-long Company Voluntary Arrangement (“CVA”) despite existence of contingent personal injury and pension claims.

Jack Gale

Thu, 8 Apr 2021 11:03:25 GMT+00:00

Application to extend time for rescission dismissed

Sarjanda Ltd (Sarjanda) was a property development company. It entered compulsory liquidation on 29 August 2018. Although not trading at the date of liquidation, the Applicants (Sarjanda and a contributory) believed that Sarjanda had claims against its professional advisors worth c.£600,000. If the claims were successful, Sarjanda may pursue projects in the future.

Catherine Noble

Thu, 8 Apr 2021 10:48:49 GMT+00:00

A simple debt claim or an insolvency proceeding?

The company entered into administration in June 2018 and in June 2020 moved to a creditors’ voluntary liquidation. In March 2020, the administrators (now liquidators) sought a declaration from the court that the shareholders of the company pay to the company the balance of 70% of their share capital. The shareholders applied to strike out the liquidators’ claim.

Sian Hughes

Thu, 8 Apr 2021 10:37:13 GMT+00:00

Remedying filings with Registrar of Companies

The administrators of the company filed a statement of affairs with the Registrar of Companies containing, in error, the schedules referred to in rule 3.30(6)(b) Insolvency Rules (schedules of employees and consumers claiming amounts paid in advance for the supply of goods and services). Rule 3.32(2) prohibits the filing of these schedules by administrators, quite aside from any possible breach of data legislation in relation to the employees.

Jamie Wheatley

Thu, 8 Apr 2021 10:24:15 GMT+00:00

Provisional relief unnecessary once main foreign proceedings recognised

A provisional relief order had been made under the Cross-Border Insolvency Regulations 2006 (CIBR 2006), effectively freezing a Russian bankrupt’s assets worldwide.

Jacob Walker

Thu, 8 Apr 2021 10:19:48 GMT+00:00

Steinhoff scheme of arrangement approved

Steinhoff International Holdings NV, the ultimate holding company of the Steinhoff Group applied for an order sanctioning a scheme of arrangement. The scheme was narrow in that it sought to authorise amendments to some finance documents.

Lino Di Lorenzo

Thu, 8 Apr 2021 10:14:46 GMT+00:00

Good news for charity trustees

The Official Receiver (OR) pursued disqualification orders against the non-executive trustees and directors of the Kids Company charity, along with its CEO who it alleged was a de facto director.

Neil Smyth

Thu, 8 Apr 2021 10:02:19 GMT+00:00

The tax risks of working remotely from overseas

As the coronavirus pandemic extends into a second year, working remotely from an attractive overseas location can be an appealing prospect. However, the tax implications should not be forgotten.

Kevin Lowe

Wed, 7 Apr 2021 16:19:14 GMT+00:00

Asda staff win a major victory in their equal pay claim

In a hotly anticipated decision at the Supreme Court last week, Asda supermarket staff won a major victory in their equal pay claim against Asda. Although the ruling does not mean the approximately 35,000 claimants have won the right to equal pay, the ruling does represent a big step forward and means their claim can continue.

Richard Santy

Tue, 6 Apr 2021 13:55:19 GMT+00:00

Rejection in triplicate: Section 117 responsible commissioner revisited (again...and again…and again…)

In a curious turn of events on Ordinary Residence determinations, Jane Williams reviews the judicial review proceedings in R (Worcestershire County Council) v Secretary of State for Health and Social Care.

Jane Williams

Tue, 30 Mar 2021 15:41:36 GMT+00:00

Build to Rent: Resilient despite the pandemic?

The Build to Rent (BTR) sector enjoyed impressive growth before the pandemic. With around one in five households in the UK now renting, BTR has been well positioned to benefit.

Vanessa Warren

Tue, 30 Mar 2021 15:34:05 GMT+00:00

Existing buildings - re-use and recycle

2019 brought the climate crisis into worldwide focus, and with UK building operations accounting for approximately 30% of the country’s emissions, tackling climate change has become impossible for the property industry to ignore. With the Government’s target to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, a focus on sustainability is very much on the agenda.

Catherine Anderson

Tue, 30 Mar 2021 15:26:28 GMT+00:00

The latest employment rates and limits

New rates for many statutory payments and compensation limits will apply from April 2020. We have set out the latest figures in a helpful table, for HR professionals to download and have to hand.

Amy O'Brien

Tue, 30 Mar 2021 14:14:26 GMT+00:00

I’ve just been notified of an English freezing order. Help!

People located outside of the UK are often concerned to learn they may be expected to comply with an English freezing order. If you are sent such an order you should take advice as soon as possible. However, the good news is that if you find yourself in this situation there are a number of things you can check that may mean you are not required to comply with the order. You may even be entitled to recover from the applicant your expenses incurred obtaining legal advice in respect of the order, or applying to the court to clarify your obligations.

Eric France

Mon, 29 Mar 2021 08:04:01 GMT+00:00

Biotech patents – assessing validity for broad claims

The 2020 ruling of the UK Supreme Court in Regeneron v Kymab made sense in context. The humanised antibodies that could be made using the methods described in the patent did not deliver enough useful outcomes to merit a monopoly over a whole field. However, there have been concerns about the way the decision was framed. Would it prove to be a sensible step forward, or would it cut the legs out from under too many biotechnology patents.

Mark Pearce

Fri, 26 Mar 2021 12:10:37 GMT+00:00

Corporate law collectives

Buy and build, consolidation, platform Bolt-ons, add-ons, roll-up strategy - these are some of the terms used to describe a target company, the "platform", then adding on other similar companies (often smaller) by acquisition. Its aim is to generate value at an often faster rate than through organic growth. Investors, such as PE houses, often use this route with their investment companies until they exit.

Natalie Wade

Tue, 23 Mar 2021 09:43:30 GMT+00:00

Protecting reputation - why understanding your supply chain is so important

The recent case brought against Biffa by three individuals who were victims of human trafficking and slavery has emphasised, yet again, the importance for businesses of carrying out effective due diligence on their supply chains.

Fay Lyttle

Mon, 22 Mar 2021 14:49:55 GMT+00:00

Lender claims – problems ahead?

Often we are asked ‘where are the next claims going to come from?’ and often that is an exceptionally difficult question to answer. However, three recent developments in funding arrangements for residential house purchases give me cause for concern.

Angus Turner

Thu, 18 Mar 2021 14:46:15 GMT+00:00

Insurance brokers' duties: avoiding the risk of unnecessary litigation

James Thompson and Shanice Holder consider the High Court’s recent decision which provides a reminder of the insurance brokers' duty to protect its policyholder client from the unnecessary risk of litigation with its insurer.

James Thompson

Sun, 14 Mar 2021 15:33:15 GMT+00:00

Recovery Loan Scheme – New government-backed loan scheme announced for UK businesses

In welcome news for UK businesses suffering from the continued impact of Covid-19, the Government announced in the Budget on 3 March that it would be introducing a new loan scheme, called the ‘Recovery Loan Scheme’, to support ongoing access to government-backed finance until at least the end of the year.

Zak Virgin

Fri, 12 Mar 2021 09:49:17 GMT+00:00

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme: frequently asked questions

The Government announced in its March budget that the Scheme will now continue until the end of September 2021. Employer contributions will start to increase from July onwards.

David Mills

Fri, 5 Mar 2021 15:29:17 GMT+00:00

Collateral attack: where are we now?

Within the space of four weeks the Court of Appeal have handed down three decisions dealing with collateral attack and abuse of process in the context of proceedings following earlier litigation.

Niall Innes

Fri, 5 Mar 2021 11:03:32 GMT+00:00

The UK’s new medicines and medical devices regime – next steps

The Medicines and Medical Devices Act has now become law. Much of the legislation simply sets up powers and frameworks for development of the UK’s regulatory system for medicines, veterinary medicines and medical devices. Importantly, Part 4 of the Act introduces a new enforcement regime for medical devices, replacing provisions currently scattered across other legislation.

Stephanie Caird

Fri, 5 Mar 2021 09:45:10 GMT+00:00

Late night coding: who owns the results?

In a recent dispute over employees and copyright ownership – Penhallurick v MD5 Limited – ownership of copyright in software created out of hours and on a home computer was in question. Did the employee have the right to take it with him when he left or was it owned by his employer?

Bart Topps

Wed, 3 Mar 2021 14:07:48 GMT+00:00

Covid-19 and business interruption – seconds out, round 2

Due to the implications of Covid-19 on business interruption insurance, the Commercial Court has created a specialist list to consider suitable cases. It has recently handed down judgment on a case falling under that list called Rockliffe Hall Limited v Travelers Insurance Company Limited [2021] EWCH 412 (Comm) which we consider below.

Ben Hardiman

Tue, 2 Mar 2021 14:06:15 GMT+00:00

Part 26A scheme – first ever cross-class cram down

The court sanctioned a Part 26A scheme notwithstanding that the requisite statutory majority had not been achieved for one class of creditors.

Morgan Bowen

Tue, 2 Mar 2021 13:15:49 GMT+00:00

Administrators’ duties and the sale of Force India

Concerned that time was of the essence and posed with the real danger of staff members being poached by other championship teams, administrators of a F1 team wanted to complete an urgent rescue. To be viable, any rescue plan would need the approval of numerous F1 stakeholders.

Jack Gale

Tue, 2 Mar 2021 12:58:38 GMT+00:00

Exclusive jurisdiction clauses, contractual and insolvency proceedings

The claimant and a third party (“M”) entered into a loan agreement and swap agreement (the “agreements”). M went into liquidation and the Spanish Insolvency Court approved a bid from a company (“S”), assuming the assets and liabilities of M. S later merged into the defendant.

Sian Hughes

Tue, 2 Mar 2021 11:59:06 GMT+00:00

Liability for unlawful distributions

This case is concerned with the payment by the Company of a dividend and management charge to its shareholder to offset sums due from the shareholder. The claimant contended that the payments were unlawful distributions and should be repaid in full as there were insufficient distributable profits.

Jamie Wheatley

Tue, 2 Mar 2021 11:51:07 GMT+00:00

Court interprets meaning of “value” in defence to void disposition claims

Mills & Reeve acted for the trustee in bankruptcy in a case which has provided important interpretation of “value” in the context of Section 284(4) IA1986.

Jacob Walker

Tue, 2 Mar 2021 11:43:50 GMT+00:00