Should the salary threshold for Tier 2 workers be reduced?
There are suggestions that the next Prime Minster should lower the salary threshold from £30,000 to £20,000. Industry experts believe that this will avoid skills shortages.
Currently any non-EU citizen working in the UK must earn at least £30,000, but under current proposals this will be extended to EU citizens after Brexit.
Many UK industry experts believe that all jobs in the UK were currently beneath the £30,000 cut-off.
Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt who is considered the underdog in the race to be the next leader of the Conservative Party, has said he would review the £30,000 salary threshold, while prioritising skilled workers.
Boris Johnson, has called for a new Australian-style points-based system. This would consider factors such as whether an immigrant has a firm job offer and their ability to speak English.
Both men also oppose the government’s target of bringing net migration down to under 100,000 people a year, which has never been met.
Recent figures gleaned from freedom of information requests show that, despite Home Office rules, 90% of nurses, half of all medical radiographers, 10% of paramedics and a third of secondary schoolteachers earn below the minimum.
A Home Office spokesman said: “Our new skills-based immigration system is designed to attract the talented workers we need for the economy to continue to prosper, while also delivering on the referendum result following the end of free movement.
If you would like to discuss the above or have any queries regarding sponsorship applications and the Tier 2 process please contact Leena Chouhan on 0203 818 5433 or email: email@example.com
Office of Tax Simplification review inheritance tax
Earlier this month the Office of Tax Simplification (OTS) published its second and final report in relation to its review into inheritance tax (IHT). As a brief reminder, the first report, as published back in November 2018, looked at the administration side of IHT. This second report focuses on the design and calculation of IHT, and is arguably therefore of greater interest.
The OTS makes a number of recommendations in this second report, including:
Is there a time limit for bringing a personal injury claim?
There will almost always be a time limit for you to have either settled a claim for personal injury compensation or to have started formal court proceedings.
The safest approach is to instruct a solicitor shortly after the incident who can then advise you on the applicable time limit for bringing a claim in your particular case. The below is intended to give some guidance on the applicable time limits but is not intended to be a substitute for formal legal advice.
The time period for bring a claim for personal injury compensation will vary depending on where the incident occurred, and whether the injured person at the time was below the age of 18 or had mental capacity.
As a general rule the claim for personal injury compensation must have been concluded, or formal court proceedings started, within 3 years of the incident date otherwise Statute will prevent the injured person from pursuing a claim for personal injury compensation unless you have secured from the Court permission to proceed.
There are a few exceptions to the above rule being:-
1. If at the time of the incident the injured person was below the age of 18 then the claim must have concluded or formal court proceedings started by their 21st birthday;
2. If an incident occurred on water then a different time period may apply, typically 2 years;
3. If an incident occurred in the air then a different time period may apply, typically 2 years;
4. If the incident occurred in a country other than England and Wales then you may be restricted to the time period set down by the laws of that country.
5. If the injury was sustained over a period of time, such as a repetitive strain injury at work, then the point in time is taken as the date of knowledge when the cause of the injury is identified.
If you make an Application to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority then you must have submitted to them the Application within 2 years of the incident date.
It, therefore, is important if you wish to pursue a claim for personal injury compensation that you instruct a solicitor as soon as possible after the incident to enable your claim to either be concluded or court proceedings issued within the set time period.
Matthew Claxson is a Solicitor and Partner at Moore Blatch specialising in serious injury and fatal incidents.
Would an Australian points based system work in the UK?
Boris Johnson has recommended that we move towards an ‘Australian style’ points based system. We already have a points based system in the UK so how would this differ from the Australian one?
The Australian system is based upon scoring according to a list of criteria such as language, ability, age, competency, professional qualifications and industry based experience. The points need to be above a minimum point requirement which means that then they will be granted a visa.
You can balance out the score if your level of English is limited but you have a great deal of work experience.
How is this different from the current PBS?
The UK Points based system was introduced in 2007, this system must meet mandatory criteria before they are assigned any points. Also there is no room to compensate scoring points in one area and if it is not met in another area. It is very different from our current system in the UK which is a black and white approach to immigration.
The main difference is in the UK they need a guaranteed job offer.
We cannot see how another Australian style points based system would work in the UK. It wont necessary reduce net migration to the UK. We anticipate that it would bring about a new set of issues.
If you have any queries about this please do not hesitate to contact us by email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Education, Health and Care needs assessments
Have you requested an Education, Health and Care needs assessment for your child?
Section 36(8) of The Children and Families Act 2014 states that a local authority must carry out a needs assessment where:
- a child or young person has or may have special educational needs and
- it may be necessary for special educational provision to be made for him or her
Unfortunately many local authorities create their own policies which ignore the legal test set out in law.
The Legal Test
- When a child or young person has special educational needs
- A child or young person has special educational needs if he or she has a learning difficulty or disability which calls for special educational provision to be made for him or her.
2. A child of compulsory school age or a young person has a learning difficulty or disability if he or she
- has a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of others of the same age, or
- has a disability which prevents or hinders him or her from making use of facilities of a kind generally provided for others of the same age in mainstream schools or mainstream post-16 institutions.
3. Where a child or young person has or may have special educational needs and it may be necessary for special educational provision to be made for them, the local authority must carry out an EHC needs assessment.
Reasons for refusing an EHC needs assessment
Local authorities will often put forward arguments to refuse an EHC needs assessment which are not based on the legal test. Examples of this are:
- The child or young person is performing within the range of ability found in a mainstream school and therefore does not have needs which are severe enough for an EHC needs assessment.
- There are other children with more severe needs in the school or class who have not had an EHC needs assessment or an Education, Health and Care Plan.
- The child should be functioning more than 2 years behind their peers to qualify for an EHC needs assessment.
- The child has mainly health needs and therefore does not need an EHC needs assessment.
- The child is academically capable and therefore does not need an EHC Plan.
This is not a definitive list and while these reasons sound logical in some ways, they are not lawful. All parents are required to do is demonstrate that their child has special educational needs and it ‘may’ be necessary for special educational provision to be made for him or her in accordance with an EHC Plan. If it is clear to you that your child has special educational needs and it may be necessary for special educational provision to be made for them, the local authority should carry out an EHC needs assessment.
In our experience appeals to the Tribunal are successful if your local authority refuses to carry out an EHC needs assessment for a reason that does not apply the legal test. The Tribunal will always apply the law when deciding on these appeals.
British Airways to be fined a record £183 million for data breach
The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has published its intention to fine British Airways £183.39 million under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) for serious breach of data protection.
This fine is significant as this is the largest fine the ICO has ever issued; under the preceding Data Protection Act 1998, the maximum fine the ICO was able to issue was £500,000. This is also the first major monetary penalty to be issued under GDPR.
Under the new rules introduced last year by GDPR, the ICO can now issue fines up to a maximum of 4% of the annual worldwide turnover. This fine is a significant amount and represents 1.5% of British Airways worldwide turnover in 2017.
The fine relates to a cyber attack of British Airways’ website whereby attackers were able to direct visitors to a fraudulent website and obtain personal data. The incident reportedly began in June 2018 and affected around 500,000 individuals. Attackers were able to access personal data relating to names, email addresses, log-in details and card payment details.
It is important to note that the ICO has not yet fined British Airways; it has only made public that it intends to fine this amount. British Airways will have around a month to submit its representations, however it will be interesting to see what factors the ICO takes into consideration when arriving at the final penalty for the first major monetary fine to be issued so far under GDPR. This announcement also acts as a reminder to organisations to ensure they have adequate security measures in place when handling personal data.
Pride and Prejudice – Marriage in Modern Times
Marriage has become a more inclusive term over the past decade with the introduction of the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act 2013, which made gay and lesbian marriage possible. This has been praised by many as a victory for equality, something many will think about as London Pride Parade approaches on 6th July. At first glance it could be seen as a step towards equality, but the truth is that same sex marriage simply isn’t the same especially in the legal world. For example:
Tribunal procedure – strike out
ICTS Limited v Visram.
Employers knowledge of disability scrutinised
Baldeh v Churches Housing Association of Dudley and District Ltd.