GHP Insights

News, Q&As and Press Releases From Our Team

Q&A - Can casual gardener sue me for accident sustained using my tools?

Q:  At the beginning of the summer I engaged a local odd job man to cut my hedges. I thought it would make it easier for him if he used my electric hedge-cutters and also my ladders. Unfortunately, however, the ground was uneven and the hedge-cutter was heavier than he was used to. As a result, when he reached across he lost his balance, the ladder toppled over and the hedge-cutter sliced into two of his fingers. I took him straight to hospital where they stitched the fingers. Now he is threatening to sue me for compensation because he has no feeling in the fingers and says he cannot work. Can he really do this?

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Q&A - If I buy a franchise what happens to it if I die or become incapacitated?

Q: I am in my mid-fifties and have been made redundant. I worked for the company for thirty years and got a good redundancy package so I am thinking of buying a franchise with my wife. Would I be able to pass the business on to my son in my Will and appoint him to run it if I become incapacitated - because my wife wouldn't be able to run a business on her own.

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Q&A - Can I set up a new company with a similar name after liquidation?

Q:  I am a director of a company that is struggling financially. A creditors' meeting is due to take place next week to liquidate it. Could I set up a new company afterwards with a similar name?

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Q&A - Can I get an Agricultural Occupancy Condition removed from farm cottage?

Q:  I am a farmer. A few years ago I diversified, which meant I needed less workers and a cottage on the farm was left vacant. When my son, who chose a different career, got married twelve years ago, he and his wife moved into the cottage. Now they are moving to a different part of the country and I would like to sell the cottage to fund my retirement. Is there a way I can get the Agricultural Condition removed to increase its value?Occupancy

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Q&A - House has no building regulations approval - should I proceed with purchase?

Q:  I put in an offer on a repossessed house. It was accepted by the mortgaging bank and searches were started which turned up a query relating to building work done on the property several years ago, for which building regulations approval was never granted. The estate agent says it all looks OK but I am not sure whether to proceed with the sale. Can you advise?

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Q&A - Can we sell off the Granny flat which is part of our house?

Q: We converted the top floor of our Victorian terraced house into a self-contained "granny flat" with its own entrance, for my widowed mother. The flat is a separate dwelling for Council Tax. Now that Mother has gone into long-term care and our children are at university, the flat is empty. We don't want the fuss of being landlords and responsible for repairs. Instead we wondered if we could we simply sell off the flat; and, as long as we keep paying the mortgage, is there really any need for us to go through all the paperwork and hassle of getting permission from the bank?

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Q&A - Can employer of 13 years get away with 4 year redundancy pay-out?

Q:  I have worked my employer for 13 years and 4 years ago I was asked to move departments. Last week we were all told we could apply for voluntary redundancy in accordance with funding cuts. I applied and worked out my redundancy package based on my 13 years employment. My application was accepted but the pay-off details stated that I only received a payment based on the last 4 years. I queried this and was told that my contract changed when I moved departments and that is all I am entitled to. Is this correct? .

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Q&A - My tenants have disappeared, taking the keys and owing rent - what should I do?

Q.  I own a commercial property. My tenant told me he had some financial difficulties but hoped to pay owed rent the following month. Three months on he has paid nothing and has left the property. He is saying he owes me nothing, and is also refusing to hand back the keys. What should I do?.

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Q&A - Does son need solicitor present for police station questioning?

Q:  Our son recently got into a fight at school and the head teacher called in the police.  Now it seems the police are holding an investigation into the incident and they have asked us to accompany our son to the police station as they need to ask him a few questions about what happened.  Would it be advisable for us to have a solicitor present?

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Q&A - Liability for mortgage after husband's death

Q:  My late husband and I owned our family home jointly. For tax reasons, my husband was advised to leave his share in the property directly to our four children, all of whom have "flown the nest". Although they have all promised me that the house is mine to live in for as long as I wish, why am I the only one paying the mortgage each month? The children have not heard anything from the building society and it seems unfair that their father's share has gone to them but I am left paying for it.

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