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Possession of an offensive weapon

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Carrying an offensive weapon is a serious offence. The unlawful provision and possession of weapons encourages violence and can cause serious injury and death. In addition to this possession of weapons also assists in the facilitation of other criminal...

What are Section 47 Enquiries?

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These enquiries refer to section 47 of the Children Act 1989.  Section 47 of the Act covers a Local Authority’s, or Social Services, duty to carry out an investigation or assessment when they are informed that a child, who lives in their area,...

What is a Lasting Power of Attorney?

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A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a legal document that allows you (the donor) to appoint attorneys to make decisions on your behalf.  Most people appoint trusted friends or relatives.  Some decide to appoint professional attorneys and, in this...

What is reasonable contact with a child in care?

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Under Section 34(1) of the Children Act 1989, where a child is in the care of a Local Authority, the Local Authority must allow ‘reasonable contact’ between a child in its care and their parents, guardian and others with parental...

Great North Run 2018

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Gemma Curtis, a solicitor in our care team entered the Great North Run 2018 and ran for Emery Johnson Astills’ chosen charity – Bodie Hodges Foundation. The Great North Run is the biggest half marathon in the world and attracts nearly 60,000...

Property Fraud and Identification Checks

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Buying and/or selling a house can be a stressful period in your life with constant pressure to exchange contracts as quickly as possible. What happens if you discover the seller was a fraudster after contracts were exchanged and the transaction completed?...

What is a Lancashire Finding in Care Proceedings

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Where a child has suffered an injury and the cause of this injury is unknown, the Family Court may decide that a Fact Finding Hearing is necessary to hear the evidence available. The Court will hear evidence from all parties involved in the case and in some...

Role of CAFCASS in Private Law Proceedings

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CAFCASS stands for Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service. CAFCASS represent children in Family Court cases in England. Their role is to put children’s wishes and feelings forward and make sure that decisions are made that are in the...

Gemma Curtis is putting on her running shoes for the biggest half marathon in the UK!

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    Gemma Curtis, a Solicitor from our Care Team, is running the Great North Run on 9 th September 2018. Gemma is doing this to raise money for the Bodie Hodges Foundation, which is the chosen charity of Emery Johnson Astills. The Great...

Acid Attacks Increasing. What is the Law?

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Publicity surrounding reports of incidents involving the use of acid or other corrosive substances have increased recently, with questions being asked as to how offenders who threaten or attack people with such substances are dealt with by the Courts. Here...

Great Scottish Swim 2018

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On Saturday 25 th August 2018 Emma Stanbanks, Senior Associate and Joint Head of the Care Team took part in the Great Scottish Swim in aid of our charity of the year, the Bodie Hodges Foundation. Emma braved the bracing 15.6-degree water to swim a mile in...

Bank Holiday Drinking? Reminder to Drivers....

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It is easy to get caught up in the bank holiday spirit, but, did you know that you may possibly still be over the drink drive limit the following day? Offences we deal with include being in charge of a vehicle while above the legal limit or unfit through...

The 'Common Law Marriage Myth' and the Law

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The number of unmarried cohabiting couples has almost doubled from 1.5 million in 1996 to 3.3 million in 2017. A recent survey showed as many as two in three cohabiting couples are unaware that there is no such thing as a ‘Common law Marriage’ in...

Is sending one text or message from your phone worth your licence?

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It is illegal to use your phone while driving on the roads in the UK. This applies to anything a driver does with the phone; including making a call, sending a message or changing music.  Despite the illegality of using a phone behind the...

Children in the Care System

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According to a recent study published by Anne Longfield (the Children’s Commissioner for England), many children in the care system are receiving consistent, safe and stable care which is extremely positive and encouraging to hear. However, there are...

Making a Will

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It is important to make a Will to ensure that your estate passes as you wish when you die. Your estate includes your house, money in bank accounts and even your jewellery. If you do not make a Will, the rules of intestacy will apply which means that your...

My Social Worker wants me to sign a Written Agreement, what does this mean?

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A Written Agreement is a tool that is often used by Children’s Social Care (Local Authorities) when working with children and families.  They can be used when children are subject to Child in Need Plans, Child Protection Plans or when they are...

Can you go to prison for using a Drone?

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The UK has seen a rise on the use of Drones for both fun and commercial use. However as a result of new laws being brought in, people found flying drones above 400ft and within a kilometre of airport boundaries, could find themselves being charged with a...

Survivors of domestic violence and paid leave

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New Zealand has taken a big step forward by being the second country in the world to grant victims of domestic abuse an additional ten days paid leave from work each year. The first country was the Philippines. Women’s Aid have, through their work,...

Monkey dust: Terrifying Drug now on UK streets for £2

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A new psychoactive substance has sparked a crisis in a UK city - where the drug is bought for as little as £2 a hit. The synthetic drug, dubbed 'monkey dust', is sending increasing numbers of people into violent and psychotic episodes in the...

What is a Family Assistance Order?

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A Family Assistance Order (FAO) is a short-term order which the Court can grant under Section 16 of the Children Act 1989 requiring a CAFCASS officer or an officer from the Local Authority to advise, assist and (where appropriate) befriend any person in the...

British Court recognises Sharia Law

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The High Court has made a ruling recognising Sharia Law for the first time in a British Court. This could change the way Islamic marriage and divorce works in the UK. Mr Khan and Mrs Akhtar’s marriage ceremony was conducted in a ceremony called a...

What searches are needed if I am buying a property?

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Pre Contract searches reveal additional information about the property you plan to purchase. The caveat emptor rule “buyer beware” puts the onus on the buyer to check the property for any physical defects and to make sure that the legal title is...

Authorities should advise survivors of domestic abuse

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Charlotte Rooks, a survivor of horrific domestic abuse, has recently discovered via social media of her abuser’s impending release from prison.  She was reported to be angry and upset and remains terrified of the perpetrator. Ms Rooks was beaten...

Prisons are not working.....

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“The reformed prisons of the 1800’s with their new emphasis on rehabilitation were invented to destroy the criminal personality and to generate new life and a new law abiding identity. Predicated upon violence the prisons proved successful in...

What is a Special Guardianship Order?

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A Special Guardianship Order (SGO) is a private law order which legally appoints an individual(s) as a child’s guardian. A SGO is application made under the Children Act 1989 and allows the child to remain and live with the appointed individual until...

New Supreme Court Ruling - Owens v Owens

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Mr and Mrs Owens married in 1978 and separated in 2015. Mrs Owens wanted a divorce. Upon separating, Mrs Owens petitioned for divorce on the basis that the marriage had irretrievably broken down as a result of Mr Owen’s ‘unreasonable...

Alternative Options to Court in Family Matters

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Here at Emery Johnson Astills we understand that going through a divorce or separation can be an emotional and difficult time. It is generally better for everybody involved if arrangements between you can be agreed, this is in relation to both finances and...

What is an injunction?

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Anti-Social Behaviour: Civil Injunctions Civil injunctions are governed by the Anti-Social behaviour Crime and Policing Act 2014, and are available in the Crown Court and High Court in relation to adults, and in relation to persons under 18 they are...

Nitrous Oxide & Beyond...

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Emery Johnson Astills have seen an increase in the number of cases before the Courts involving newer synthetic drugs. The offences were created by the Psychoactive Substances Act 2016 which came into force on 26 th May 2016. The Sentencing Council has...

Get prepared for tomorrow by making Lasting Powers of Attorney today

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Lasting Power of Attorney documents are essentially deeds that appoint Attorneys to help you make decisions or to make decisions on your behalf. There are two types of Lasting Power of Attorney, one for Property and Finances and one for Health and Welfare....

Case law update: Re R [2018] EWFC 28

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In this case the Judge decided that an Interim Care Order (which is a temporary order) should only be used to allow the Court to safeguard the child’s welfare while it gathers the necessary information to make a decision about the child’s...

"I'm not in possession of drugs with intent to supply, I was just going to share the drugs with my friend"

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Many people are confused about the elements of supplying controlled substances such as cannabis and cocaine, particularly where sharing illegal drugs amongst friends is concerned.  It is an offence for a person to have a controlled drug in their...

Restrictive Covenants: what you can & can't do with your new property

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When purchasing a home, you should be aware of restrictive covenants affecting the property, to avoid costly mistakes. At Emery Johnson Astills, we will ensure that you know exactly what you can and cannot do with your property.   What is a...

World Cup Penalties

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A further “penalty” of the World Cup, which has recently been reported on is the increase of domestic violence and abuse during the tournament. Research undertaken at Lancaster University has shown there is an increase in domestic abuse during...

Wrongly accused of a Sexual offence?

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At Emery Johnson Astills we know how frightening it can be to find yourself under investigation for or charged with a sexual offence. The chances are you will have no previous experience of being interviewed by the police or appearing at court. It can be...

FROM TODAY, motorists to face 3 points & a £100 fine for driving too close to cyclists

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Following a Government review into bike safety, plans are to be announced by the Transport Minister in relation to motorists driving too close to cyclists. The rules are being brought in to encourage more people to use bikes and reduce accidents. From...

What is a Family Group Conference?

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A family group conference allows family members to meet along with professionals who may be involved with a child, where problems have arisen in caring for a child or safeguarding concerns have been raised. The conference allows for a plan to be established...

Owens v Owens - a move in Divorce?

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Mr and Mrs Owens married in 1978 and separated in 2015. Mrs Owens wanted a divorce. Upon separating, Mrs Owens submitted a petition for divorce on the basis that the marriage had irretrievably broken down as a result of Mr Owen’s ‘unreasonable...

Upskirting - Developments June 2018

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On Friday 15th June 2018 a bill to criminalise upskirting in England and Wales was blocked by a single Tory MP, Sir Christopher Chope, much to the disgust of the nation and his fellow MPs. What is Upskirting? Upskirting is a term used to describe taking...

Parental Responsibility and Changes in Society

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According to a recent article in the ‘Independent’, a transgender man wants to be identified as the father on his baby’s birth certificate, as he legally became a male when his child was born. Parental responsibility (PR) encompasses all of...

12 points on licence exceptional hardship

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When a driver accumulates twelve or more penalty points within a three year period, the court will need to consider whether they should be disqualified under the totting up provisions. The Court guidelines state that where a driver has 12 points or more...

Domestic Abuse and Homelessness

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Domestic Abuse victims are falling through the cracks into a spiral of homelessness a report warns. 35% of women and 8% of men who sleep rough or have experienced homelessness, found themselves in that situation due to some form of abuse.  The study...

Leicester Legal Walk 2018

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Leicester Legal Walk Many of our staff at Emery Johnson Astills took part in The Leicester Legal Walk yesterday, 4 th June 2018. The Walk was 10km around the City of Leicester. Our route took us past many of the legal sights of Leicester, including the...

Stamp Duty Guide

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What is stamp duty? Stamp duty is a lump sum that you are liable to pay when you buy a residential property or a piece of land costing more than £125,000.00 (or more than £40,000.00 for second homes). This tax applies to freehold and...

What is a Residential Assessment Unit?

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Where concerns have been raised about a parent’s ability to provide safe care for their child, a residential assessment may be considered as opposed to a community based assessment to assess if they can parent the child safely and appropriately. A...

First English Forced Marriage Prosecution

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22 nd May 2018 saw the first successful conviction in England for forced marriage.  The mother of the victim, who was 17 at the time, fooled her daughter into going to Pakistan in September 2016 to marry a man 16 years her senior.  On a trip to...

Dementia Awareness

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This week it is Dementia Action (Awareness) Week 2018. Here at Emery Johnson Astills we are proud to be Dementia Friends. Members of our team have attended a training and awareness session with Alzheimer’s Society’s Dementia Friends. ...

Drug Offences - An Overview

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In efforts to prevent drug misuse legal restrictions are placed on the creation, use and distribution of highly dangerous and harmful drugs. Under legislation controlled drugs are those classified as being of either class A, B or C depending upon their...

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