Who Rules the UK?

Courts Threaten Democracy legal Secretary

What role should the Courts have in maintaining our democracy?

The summer of 2009 may be remembered as the point in time when trust in Parliament reached an all-time low. The understandable anger at the endless revelations about MP’s expenses has seemed to threaten our entire system of government. What has made matters worse is the apparent lack of real accountability for MPs.

A Career as a Virtual Assistant Might Be Just for You!

I have worked as a legal secretary for many years now, and have never been out of work since leaving school in 1983, apart from going on maternity break for a couple of years when the children were very small.  So when I was made redundant whilst working for DLA Piper in their Birmingham office in March of this year, it came as a huge shock to find myself suddenly jobless.

The Venables Website – A Personal Story

I first ‘discovered’ the Internet on a trip to the US in 1995. I was an IT consultant for a group of lawyers, and I could immediately see the possibilities that the Internet offered the legal world. I soon set up my own website at www.venables.co.uk with information that I thought would be useful for UK lawyers. At that time, only a handful of firms of solicitors had a website and there was only one other independent legal site in the UK – Nick Holmes’ infolaw (www.infolaw.co.uk). He and I met quite soon after this and agreed that the Internet was big enough for both of us, and we have been friends and colleagues (and occasionally rivals!) ever since.

Patience Is a Virtue

Do you feel frustrated or discouraged whilst waiting for something you want, such as a promotion, a new job or a new qualification?

Many people may find that their patience is being tested at the moment due to the recession. You may not be receiving the promotion you had hoped for, or perhaps finding a new job is turning out to be harder than you expected. Studying may be more difficult if you are stressed about your finances. The recession requires patience from everyone, however, remember that we are all in this together.

Office Ergonomics

Office ErgonomicsLooking After Yourself at Work

If you spend most of your work time seated at a desk, fingers tapping a keyboard and eyes glued to a screen all day, you have what is known as a sedentary job. You might think, while you are sipping a cup of tea or sending an email, that this comfy desk life exempts you from the work-related types of injuries you could get working in a danger-filled job as a tree surgeon, crab fisherman or professional ninja. Quite the opposite is true! Sedentary work has its risks. Whilst danger doesn’t lurk around every office corner, it can certainly lurk in your computer screen and even in your mouse. I am talking, of course, about the danger of repetitive strain injury.

New Supreme Court

There have, in recent years, been mounting calls for the creation of a new free-standing Supreme Court. This court would separate the highest appeal court from the second house of Parliament (the House of Lords). On 12 June 2003 the Government announced its intention to do so, and eventually the Constitutional Reform Act 2005 was enacted. This Act paved the way for the creation of a new Supreme Court for the United Kingdom. Below we examine the existing system and consider what will change (if anything) when the new Supreme Court opens for business this year in October.

The Existing System – The House of Lords

How to Pursue a Judicial Review

Judicial ReviewDealing with a public body can become a very awkward and frustrating process. Indeed, it often feels as though such an entity is a law unto itself. People can become confused as to whether or not they are able to pursue any official action against such an organisation when they believe that it has acted unlawfully in some way.

Is there some form of action that you can take if you find yourself in this situation? The simple answer to this question is ‘possibly’.

First, though, it is necessary to consider what is meant by the term ‘public body’. This category would include the following:

10 Things to Check Before Calling the IT Helpdesk

1. Is it plugged in and turned on? This may sound like an obvious thing to check, but you would be surprised how many ‘broken’ printers and ‘dead’ monitors were simply unplugged by the cleaning contractor the night before.

2. Have you tried Ctrl+Alt+Delete? If an application hangs, hold down these three keys and then end the application. Remember: Ctrl+Alt+Delete is your friend!

Defining Assaults

Defining AssultsWith so many different classifications of assaults, it can often be very confusing to determine the actual extent of an offence that may have occurred. To do so, it is necessary to consider a number of crucial aspects. These include the level and nature of any injuries sustained (i.e. the actus reus) and the offender’s intention to inflict these injuries in the first instance (i.e. the mens rea).

Security of Tenure: Refresh Your Knowledge

Any legal secretaries and PAs accustomed to working within this particular area of law will realise that it is essential to maintain an appreciation of the main types of security of tenure. It is imperative to stay on the ball if you are not dealing with this type of case on a regular basis, as this knowledge will soon become hazy and may even be forgotten.

A tenant’s security of tenure dictates the lengths to which a landlord will need to go in order to legally evict. Generally speaking, tenants who have local authorities as their landlord enjoy the most security and are often able to remain with their property even if they breach the terms of their tenancy agreement in any way. Private tenants are usually far less protected and it is often much easier for their landlord to evict them.