Ashfords' Business Bulletin - September 2019

Carrots off the menu as the ICO waves its stick - Data protection and cyber security are still a priority

While 25 May 2018 was a historic date in the data protection world, 8 July 2019 was the day that the ICO showed the world that it is a regulator with real teeth. Over two consecutive days, the ICO issued notices of intention to impose huge fines on British Airways (BA) and Marriott International for data breaches relating to cyber incidents. The news stunned organisations of all sizes in the UK and beyond and is a stark reminder that data protection and cyber security should remain a priority for all organisations.

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Family Business Disputes – When you can't even agree on whether or not you agreed 

For many good reasons, families go into business together. From husband and wife partnerships through to Walmart Inc, family businesses can be hugely successful and unsurprisingly so. When working in the family business, you find yourself working with those people you trust most in the world. As a result, there can often be less formality around agreements and working practices, but this could lead to problems later down the line. 

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EU settlement scheme: supporting your workforce 

Whilst many implications of Brexit remain uncertain, the position regarding EU nationals and their family members who are currently living in the UK is clear.  All EU nationals and their family members need to apply under the EU Settlement Scheme before the end of next year to register their right to remain in the UK.

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No will - so what? 

There is a fairly widespread misplaced belief among the population at large that it is unnecessary to go to the trouble and expense of preparing a will. The reluctance to address the uncomfortable fact that we are all mortal is reinforced by the apparent need to arrange a meeting with a solicitor and to pay for the privilege of doing so! 

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The Impact Of Brexit On Risk Allocation In Contracts 

We are increasingly becoming involved in negotiating Brexit clauses between contract parties, for a range of different reasons. They all revolve around one key point – unexpected or unascertained hardship caused by the Brexit process. Hardship clauses themselves are not new. They have historically been used most often in international contracts – for example, obliging the parties to re-negotiate their agreement in the event of hardship of any one of the parties resulting from an event that occurred after the signature of the agreement, but before the relevant party's obligations have been fulfilled, and which makes the contract materially less beneficial or more onerous, but where performance is still possible. 

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Negotiating private sector IR35 reforms: what businesses should be doing to prepare?

Businesses need to consider how they will be impacted by the IR35 reforms in April 2020. The draft legislation for the proposed IR35 reforms has now been published and broadly looks to shift responsibility for determining the tax status of off-payroll individuals from that individual to the recipient of the contractors’ service.

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Bribery Act: it’s here to stay and businesses need to operate in compliance with anti-corruption laws

Government Rejects Lords’ call for clarification on corporate hospitality and the defence of ‘adequate procedures’. Businesses that have found themselves embroiled in accusations of bribery, or who believe they are at risk, have a number of avenues they can pursue to avoid significant fines and penalties, including self-reporting and ‘deferred prosecution agreements’. 

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