Archive for September, 2009

Lawyers4U Undergoes Huge New Changes

Friday, September 18th, 2009 the leading online legal advice and practical help service has recently undergone a total transformation.

Driven by client demand has extended its range of products and services, whilst maintaining its excellent reputation for quality and customer satisfaction.

Our new look site is a sophisticated union of state of the art applications, engineering and design with one aim in mind – to provide our client’s with the very best online legal services.

The new homepage with its 3 tier advice sections, site map and easy to follow navigation tools enable clients to be immediately directed to their area of interest – be it our new Rapid Response legal query section with its comprehensive range of advice groups – or our new Drafting and Self Representation section – for those who do not wish to spend often unnecessarily large sums on legal representation – or to our new Family Law Clinic – which offers help and support on all family and relationship topics.

We have incorporated brand new features – our support section now boasts a comprehensive FAQ section enabling all first time visitors and valued clients to discover everything they wished to know about the Lawyers4U process.

Also new is the News section, The Brief, our legal blog; featuring up to date articles of interest and in depth discussions on all manner of legal topics. Our legal team along with some expert contributors will be adding regular articles – so be sure to check back often.

Finally, we offer access to a completely new mailing list. By joining you will have the chance to receive additional information, promotions and special offers as well as hear about any new services and features as soon as they are launched, before anyone else.

All this combined with over 40 years cumulative experience as fully qualified legal professionals between our consulting barristers makes Lawyers4U your first choice for online legal services.


“Law On Tour” – CIPD sets our details…

Monday, September 14th, 2009

The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) has published details of its “Law on Tour” workshops. This autumn’s workshops aim to offer a thorough employment law update, looking at important case law and previewing new legislation.

The tour starts in Leeds on 6 October 2009 and will focus particular attention on the Equality Bill to help participants increase their knowledge on:

  • Protected characteristics
  • Multiple discrimination
  • Changes to direct and indirect discrimination
  • Equal pay
  • Positive action
  • Harassment
  • Disability – the medical model and beyond

Mike Emmott, Employee Relations Adviser at the CIPD, said:

“The sharp increase in employment tribunals following the swathe of redundancies in the recession should send a clear warning to employers that they simply cannot afford to be complacent when it comes to the law. It’s vital that HR professionals are up to speed with legal developments to guide and protect employers – they need to be confident that their practices at work are sound and reflect the latest changes. The CIPD ‘ Law on Tour ’ workshops are designed to help HR professionals understand the legal complexities of perennial employment issues and to prepare them for changes to come. The Equality Bill alone is a major change that will force employers to review their existing equality strategies.”

Other areas to be covered include a whole raft of employment law also due this year, such as:

  • Fit notes
  • Additional maternity pay
  • Additional paternity pay
  • Enational minimum wage
  • Enactment of provisions of Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006
  • Amendments to Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974
  • Disability – the medical model and beyond

For more details, including dates and locations of the proposed workshops, see


Redundancies – The Labour Market Outlook Survey

Monday, September 14th, 2009

A press release issued by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) on 10 August 2009 notes that “the pace of deterioration in UK job prospects is starting to slow this summer as private sector demand for staff begins to stabilise following a surge of redundancies earlier in the year”.

According to the CIPD, not only are fewer employers expecting to make staff redundant but the scale of planned redundancies has also reduced. These findings were contained in the latest quarterly CIPD/KPMG Labour Market Outlook (LMO) survey which involved more than 900 employers and covered all sectors of the economy.

However, the CIPD notes that signs of improved employer optimism in the private sector are offset by mounting pessimism in the public sector. Moreover, the CIPD accompanies the LMO survey results with a warning that a weak economic recovery could trigger a renewed burst of redundancies in the private sector if corporate profits continue to be squeezed by fast rising unit labour costs.

Amongst employers making redundancies, workforce reductions of four per cent are expected in the three months following the survey, down from 6.5 per cent in the spring. The research also found that the pay outlook has worsened, with only 15 per cent of respondents planning to conduct a pay review this quarter, less than half the percentage of last quarter (32 per cent). Average pay increase expectations have dropped below the rate of inflation to 1.7 per cent.

Dr John Philpott, Chief Economist at the CIPD, said:

“When it comes to the immediate jobs outlook, the best that can be said is that things are getting worse more slowly. Employment will keep falling and unemployment is still on course to top three million in 2010. And it is far too soon to rule out another avalanche of private sector redundancies later in the year. While pay restraint or cuts in hours of work has helped save many jobs that might otherwise have been lost during the recession, holding onto staff when order books are far from healthy pushes up unit labour costs and eats into company profits. This can’t be sustained indefinitely – a weak economic recovery, let alone a double dip recession, might well cause many employers to reassess current staffing levels before too long.”

For more details, see


Know Your Rights : Want to see your exam records?

Saturday, September 12th, 2009

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has published a good practice note explaining the right to access examination records under the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA 1998) . The Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA 2000 ) also gives individuals the right to access other (non-personal) information held by public authorities.

The ICO notes that most of the information colleges and universities have relating to students’ examinations will be personal data. Universities and colleges need to deal with requests from students for information about their exam performance within 40 days. They will also have to deal with requests for general information made under the FOIA 2000 within 20 working days .

Examination marks, scripts, comments and minutes of appeals can be obtained by making a subject access request, under the DPA 1998, to the appropriate school, college or university. More general information, such as college or university policies or procedures, can be requested using the FOIA 2000

Students receiving exam results this summer can find out more about their grades by using their rights under the Data Protection Act. Guidance produced by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) explains how students can access personal exam records.

Examination marks, comments and minutes of appeals can be obtained by making a subject access request, under the Data Protection Act, to the appropriate school, college or university. More general information, such as college or university policies or procedures, can be requested using the Freedom of Information Act.

David Smith, Deputy Commissioner at the ICO said:

“A cornerstone of the Data Protection Act is that individuals have a right to access personal information held about them. At this time of year many students are focusing on their exam results and may want to access further information about their performance. Our guidance aims to help students understand their rights and ensure that schools, colleges and universities meet their obligations.”

If you need more information, please contact the Information Commissioner’s press office on 0207 025 7580 or visit the website at: