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Legal updates

06 June 2019 Family Matters

In a recent case before the Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber) the Tribunal were asked to consider the status of a divorced spouse's occupation of a farm dwelling. Mrs Anne Hawkins’ married Trevor Hawkins in 1975. Trevor was an agricultural labourer and lived at 2 New Cottages in the village of Old Shifford in Oxfordshire; the house was provided by his employer. Mr and Mrs Hawkins lived there together for many years but in 1990 the couple separated and Mr Hawkins left the property; they divorced in 1991. In about 1992 or 1993 the then owners of 2 New Cottages, asked Mrs Hawkins to move to another of their houses out of the village as they required 2 New Cottages for another farm worker. She agreed to move but in 1995 the owners found another property in…
17 May 2019 Litigation

Not surprisingly, there are various legal issues that need to be considered by landowners before embarking upon your diversification scheme. Johanne Spittle FALA and head of litigation at Ware & Kay solicitors explains that top of your list should be checking whether there are any restrictions that might limit possible use of your land and access to it.  Access It is common for farms and agricultural land to be accessed along private roads or tracks. If use of this road is required for the diversification project, for example to access the proposed farm shop or your commercial development, it will be necessary to establish ownership of the road or rights granted over it at the outset. If access is required over a road or track that is owned by a neighbouring landowner and over which you…
15 May 2019 Residential property

More than 85 per cent of land in England and Wales is now registered with HM Land Registry; however large swathes of rural farmland remain unregistered. Land is often farmed by the same family for years and therefore no ‘trigger event’ arises which would require first registration. Philip Taylor, Head of Residential Conveyancing and agricultural law specialist at Pearsons & Ward Solicitors in Malton explains when it is compulsory to register unregistered land and outlines the benefits and the pitfalls for those who do not. When you should register All land or property must be registered with HM Land Registry if you have: purchased it; been given land or property as a gift; inherited any land or property; leased it for more than seven years; received it in exchange for other property or land…
17 April 2019 Wills and estates

The family farm usually represents a lifetime’s work of those currently running it and even those before them. Making sure that the farm is trading well and structured properly to take advantage of any agricultural and business inheritance tax reliefs available ready to be passed down to future generations is a key concern for many farmers. However, unless you have left a valid Will, the delicate balance of ensuring that all your loved ones are cared for after you are gone, while still guaranteeing the continued well-being of the farm, could be put in jeopardy. Laura Carter, Wills and Probate Solicitor and agricultural law specialist at Pearsons & Ward Solicitors in Malton explains why it is essential for every farmer to have a Will to ensure their farming business continues to flourish for future generations…
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16 April 2019 Events

Malton Show - Sunday 30 June
16 April 2019 Residential property

Your home may well be one of your major assets. Even if you are not planning on moving in the near future, it is always a good idea to keep abreast of the latest changes in the housing market.
11 April 2019 Employment advice

Holidays and holiday pay: What employers need to know While the right to 28 days' paid holiday was a welcome addition to workers' rights, employers have been less enthusiastic about the complicated development of the rules, particularly if staff work irregular hours or their pay packets include commission or bonus payments. With the law being so hard to navigate, it is easy to unwittingly miscalculate holiday pay or to wrongly deny your employees the right to carry forward holiday. This could leave you exposed to an employment tribunal claim for back pay. Gill Wilkinson, employment law expert with Pearsons & Ward in Malton, summarises how to work out holiday pay, when workers can carry forward holiday and how to manage rolled-up holiday pay. She also takes a look at how things may change in the future…
11 April 2019 Family Matters

Remarrying when you own or rent a farm can raise a number of issues that need to be addressed, particularly if your longer-term plan is to pass the farm onto your children or someone else within your immediate family.  In this article Juliet Walker, Family Law Solicitor with Pearsons & Ward Solicitors in Malton, North Yorkshire, explains the steps you can take to increase the likelihood of a farm surviving a second marriage.   Be clear on your new spouse’s involvement and rights If your new spouse is likely to become involved in the farm business then it is important to make it clear in what capacity.  For example, will they be a paid employee with little or no input into the decision-making process or will they assume a more significant role entitling them to have…
11 April 2019 Residential property

Many people buy property with a view to letting it out for the purposes of investment. It is hoped that the rental income will pay off any mortgage over time, thus leaving the owner with income once the mortgage is cleared.
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