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The topic of online trolls and bullies is hot news at the moment, but it’s also been around for some time. The tragic death of Hannah Smith has highlighted this issue and brought to the attention of parents and other people that while online media has its benefits, it hides a dark flaw and allows people to abuse and bully. Unfortunately many people clearly feel that nothing can or will be done to prevent such overt abuse.
There are current laws in place which would cover trolling and bullying.
The Protection of Harassment Act 1997
Employment law updates are not broadly announced unless you look for them. On 29 July 2013, updates to current employment legislation were made under government reforms. There were only a handful of planned reforms that launched on 29 July; nevertheless, these reforms should be highlighted for both employers and employees.
National Minimum Wage Increase
This reform is not being launched until October, yet the increases were announced and it’s the one update that employers in particular keep their eye on.
Planned increases are as follows:
On 1 April 2013, the provisions of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act came into effect to cut the legal aid bill. Legal aid has been withdrawn for clients who are involved in family disputes such as child residency disputes. Prior to the changes in April, the Legal Services Commission enabled Family Law clients access to legal aid for all services.
How the Changes Affect Family Law
The Criminal Justice System in British Law has one fundamental basis. Innocent until proven guilty, and this entitles a person who is charged with a crime the right to a defence and a defence Lawyer. If a person is arrested and charged with a crime, those who qualify for legal aid will have their defence Lawyer paid for by the taxpayer. Guilt is based on the burden of proof – beyond reasonable doubt based on the evidence presented, and a person can be a convicted only by a jury of their peers in a trial. Magistrates can convict a person, but the powers of a magistrate court are limited in terms of case-management and sentencing powers.
This month we will consider the Law Societies Property Information Form (TA6) and explain in more depth how it is used in a normal domestic property sale. We will also try to explain what the seller’s responsibilities are when answering the questions on this form and highlight some of the serious consequences that can follow if information provided by a seller proves to be false.
Purpose of the Form
Unless you have been living in a bubble over the past few months, you have not missed the numerous news stories that have come to light relating to public sector employees whistleblowing on the inadequacies of their workplaces. This has usually been connected with NHS Trusts – where worrying problems have been identified which may have otherwise gone unnoticed but for the brave individual who realised that something had to be done.
The Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 (PACE) currently permits the police to treat a 17-year-old as an adult while in police custody. This position is at odds with the treatment of under-18s according to other legislation such as the Children’s Act 1989, the Legal Aid Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012, and the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. And the High Court has recently found the PACE provisions relating to 17-year-olds to be inconsistent with the way in which these young people are treated under such other legislation.
Perhaps the biggest lie on the Internet is saying, “Yes, I have read and agree to the above statement.” But if you want to obtain any service, you will have no choice but to agree with a company’s terms. This month we will be looking at the implications in contract law of clicking the ‘I agree’ box.
Are these terms legally binding?