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31 March 2021 Residential property

According to the Bank of England, the biggest issue for most first-time buyers is insufficient savings.  Last year saw a sharp jump in the average amount of a deposit required to get a mortgage, with some people having to provide a deposit equivalent to a full year’s salary. To help tackle this problem, the Government is introducing a new mortgage guarantee scheme until December 2022. Here Philip Taylor, a Licensed Conveyancer in the residential property team with Pearsons & Ward in Malton, looks at the latest proposal and other ways to help you buy your first home even if you only have a small deposit. The 95 per cent mortgage guarantee scheme During the pandemic, lenders have tended to ask for large deposits and 95 per cent mortgages have virtually disappeared. The new mortgage guarantee scheme…
19 March 2021 Family Matters

Families now come in all shapes and sizes, and children may live with parents who are cohabiting, married, separated or divorced. They may be part of a step-family, live with adoptive parents, grandparents, other relatives or a special guardian. If you have spent many years living with and developing a close bond with a child, you may be concerned that your ‘parental’ status is not formally recognised and you may worry that you could be excluded from key decisions in the future. Robert Bellhouse, family law expert at Pearsons & Ward Solicitors in Malton explains that parental responsibility is a legal concept defined by the Children Act.  ‘It determines all the rights, duties, powers and responsibilities and authority that a parent of a child has in relation to the child and their property.’ Whoever has parental…
10 March 2021 Family Matters

As part of any discussion regarding family finances following divorce, it is important to consider pensions.  As Robert Bellhouse, family law expert with Pearsons & Ward in Malton explains, this is particularly so if compared to your former spouse you only have a very modest pension of your own or perhaps no pension at all. ‘In many cases it may be possible to obtain a share of your former spouse’s pension pot in order to address any inequality in entitlement’, explains Robert Bellhouse, ‘but it is important to seek legal advice early to determine whether an application to the court is appropriate and, if it is, to ensure that any order made is fair’. When can a pension be shared? The court can make a pension sharing order where legal proceedings are issued to resolve the…
10 March 2021 Litigation

The Government has recently published guidance on a breathing space for debtors that will come into effect on 4 May 2021: The Debt Respite Scheme (Breathing Space Moratorium and Mental Health Crisis Moratorium) (England and Wales) Regulations 2020. As a creditor, if you are told that a debt owed to you is in a breathing space, you must stop all action related to that debt and apply the protections. These protections must stay in place until the breathing space ends. There are two types of breathing space: a standard breathing space and a mental health crisis breathing space. Both have the same effect to prevent creditors from taking action to recover qualifying debts while the Regulations are in force. A standard breathing space is available to anyone with a problem debt and will give them legal…
10 March 2021 Events

Free Employment Law Update Webinar Thursday, 29 April 2021 at 10.30am – 11.00am Register for your FREE place About this Event Join our 30 minute Employment Law Update webinar, when Gillian Reid our Head of Employment from Ware & Kay Solicitors will provide an essential update to all employers and HR professionals on the latest employment legislation. The seminar will include a discussion of key issues, such as: Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme National Living Wage/National Minimum Wage Statutory Benefits Tribunal Compensation Gender Pay Gap Reporting Guidelines for Injury to Feelings Awards IR35 Post Employment Notice Pay This is the first Employment Law Update of 2021 so don't miss out.  You may register for your FREE place today. (Be aware that this session will be hosted over Zoom). To join either use the link…
02 March 2021 Employment advice

After postponements in 2019 and 2020, the 6 April 2021 is the third date scheduled for the off-payroll working rules to be extended to the private sector. The purpose of the change is to increase compliance with tax rules known as IR35. This change has implications for: medium and large private sector organisations using contractors and freelancers; contractors and freelancers who provide their services through an intermediary, such as a personal services company; and agencies supplying contractors who provide their services through an intermediary. Medium and large private sector organisations using contractors and freelancers who provide their services through an intermediary such as a personal services company will be responsible for assessing the individual’s tax status under the off-payroll working rules. ‘The vexed issue of employment status, namely whether an individual is self-employed or…
26 February 2021 Wills and estates

If you are an executor of an estate, you may need to deal with debts that have been left behind. Any estate may have debts to be considered, even if the deceased was wealthy – it is reported that Michael Jackson died with around $500 million worth of debt. ‘Personal debts do not expire on death, they are carried over into the estate,’ says Emma Elwess, Head of Wills & Probate with Pearsons & Ward in Malton. ‘It becomes the responsibility of the executors to make sure those debts are repaid.’ Impact of debts on beneficiaries Naturally, if an estate includes any debts this will mean that there is less to be distributed to the beneficiaries. However, the extent of a beneficiary’s disappointment will depend on the nature of the gift they are expecting as well…
25 February 2021 Family Matters

As a step-parent who is getting divorced or separating, you may feel confused over what rights you will have in relation to your step-children especially if you have spent many years living as a family and have grown to love them as your own.  You know how important your bond is and may be worried that your former spouse may try to damage this relationship.  It can be an anxious time, but we can help you understand what rights you have and what options are available to you. In legal terms, to be a step-parent you must have married or entered a civil partnership with one of the child’s biological parents.  If you did not marry the biological parent but lived together with them, then your rights will be slightly different and it is important that…
25 February 2021 Firm updates

What are the prospects for the property sector in Yorkshire and Humber? With the phasing out of Direct Payments by the Government and the phased introduction of a new system that rewards farmers for improvement of the environment, landscapes across the country are set to be enhanced through agricultural policy. The farming industry will be changing the way it farms and it is vital that farmers have time to adapt to the new land management requirements. What is the best project you have been involved in? Ware & Kay have a large and diverse client base and so I have been involved in many interesting projects from complex restructuring of farming businesses to the sale and purchase of large landholdings. No two property transactions are the same and each comes with its own quirks which keeps…
18 February 2021 Employment advice

Freedom of movement from the European mainland came to an end on 1 January 2021. In December 2020 the UK government announced that the number of seasonal agricultural workers permitted to travel to the UK to help pick and package fruit and vegetables in 2021 would be increased. Now 30,000 seasonal worker visas will be made available for 2021, enabling EU and non-EU workers to enter Britain to assist with the harvest. This will treble the amount of seasonal worker visas made available in 2020.  Gillian Reid, Head of Employment at Pearsons & Ward Solicitors in Malton (part of Ware & Kay with offices in York & Wetherby) explains.  The UK seasonal worker visa program was initially launched as a pilot in 2019 and has now been extended by a further 12 months. The extension applies…
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