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Manchester Airport Set To Have The First UK Sustainable Jet Fuel Supply

Whitestone Aviation note Manchester before Heathrow or Gatwick? In a new partnership with Fulcrum BioEnergy, supported by the UK Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng, Manchester Airport is set to become the UK’s first airport to have a direct supply of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) with hopes that – by 2026 – 10% of the fuel being used for flights from Manchester will be sustainable. [1] Fulcrum BioEnergy is a pioneer in making low-carbon and low-cost transportation fuels from household garbage and commercial waste which would have been in the landfill or incinerated otherwise. The Memorandum of Understanding was signed between Fulcrum and Manchester Airports Groups (MAG) – the owner of Manchester Airport, London Stansted, and East Midlands. Neil Robinson, Manchester Airport Group CSR and Airspace Change……

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Apple’s New iOS 15.1 Feature Allows Users To Customise Text Sizes For All Applications

Whitestone I.T. Team here. Did you know that there is a brand spanking new iOS 15 iPhone feature that allows users to customise text size within individual applications on their phones that means users do not have to constantly deal with the unaccommodating text displays in some applications, as users previously had to before the iOS 15 feature? How to access the new iOS 15 feature? Many users do not know about this new feature as each individual needs to unlock the text size widget on their phones before use: First, the user needs to open the Settings application then, Second, press the Control Center button and find the Text Size option. Next to the Text Size option, there should be a green plus sign……

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The Future Of Apple’s VR Headsets: Might They Prevent Cyberbullying

The future is bright, no shades this time now it’s a headset. Apple’s future Virtual Reality headset, set to appear as early as 2022, claims to have a way to prevent internet bullies and trolls in the “Metaverse”. The potential safety system sees offending avatars having lowered volume and/or getting faded out, with the worst offenders disappearing completely. This rumoured headset is said to possibly be the first step towards an “Apple AR glasses” because of augmented reality’s close relation to virtual reality. In Apple’s recent patent application appearing on the US Patent & Trademark Office website, the fading out of an avatar could be triggered based on proximity. For example, if one user’s avatar gets too close to another, their avatar will begin to……

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The Bar Council Recognises The “Systemic Obstacles” Faced By Ethnic Minorities in Law

I was recently at a function in the Inns of Court. Upon my arrival a waiter came up to me with a drink and said to me: “wow these are your people”. I replied, “take a closer look around”. At that point a waitress walked into the room and I said, “now there are 3 of us”. In a report from the race working group of the Bar Council, it was found that barristers from ethnic minorities – particularly black and Asian women – are at a greater disadvantage compared to their white peers. Barbara Mills QC and Simon Regis, co-chairs of the Bar Council race working group, say that ethnic minorities are more likely to “face systemic obstacles to building and progressing a sustainable……

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The World’s Biggest Corporate Law Firms “Called Out” For Being On The “The Wrong Side” Of Our Climate Crisis

In August 2021, the organisation Law Students for Climate Accountability created the “climate scorecard” which rated 100 of the top law firms from A – F based on their work in combatting climate change. The organisation has found that, over the last five years, these firms have facilitated $1.36 trillion in fossil fuel transactions, litigated 358 cases on behalf of fossil fuel clients and received $34.9 million in compensation for fossil fuel lobbying. Some of the law firms which have scored low on the climate scorecard have released statements to promote their green goals for a sustainable future. In particular, the Magic Circle Law Firm Allen & Overy has said it does “more renewables work than any other law firm in the world by most……

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USA Travel Ban To Be Lifted Monday 8-11-21: What You Need To Travel

From 12:01am on 8 November 2021, the blanket travel ban instigated by President Donald Trump’s presidential proclamation – and later reimposed by the newly elected President Joe Biden – in March 2020 will be lifted. This will allow fully vaccinated individuals from the UK, Ireland and the Schengen Area to freely travel to the US along with under-18s travelling with them. Notably, all arrivals by air to the USA must take a Covid-19 test no more than three days before travel. Under the current rules, only individuals with a compassionate reason to travel to the USA are given a ‘National Interest Exception’ while individuals with family or partners in the USA are banned from travelling to the USA. From Monday, individuals who have been fully……

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London Trocadero LLP v Picturehouse Cinemas Ltd: Another Success For Landlords Against Tenants In Rent Arrears

Whitestone Chambers have been working throughout the last 18 months on cases such as this. If you need legal advice on any of the issues raised in this article, please do get in touch. The case of London Trocadero (2015) LLP v Picturehouse Cinemas Ltd [2021] EWHC 2591 (Ch) marks the third success for landlords against tenants for unpaid rent during the pandemic this year. The tenant, Picturehouse Cinemas Ltd, held two leases of cinema premises in Trocadero Centre, Piccadilly, London. Due to pandemic restrictions, the cinema had to close for certain periods which meant that Picturehouse Cinemas could not trade at all. Even during the gaps between pandemic restrictions, Central London’s trading conditions were so poor that the cinema largely remained closed and the……

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CMA Closes Investigation Into Ryanair and British Airways’ Covid Refunds Claims

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) have closed their investigation into whether Ryanair and British Airways owed customers who were legally prohibited from boarding their scheduled flights, due to lockdowns in their country, refunds stating that the legal position was unclear. Despite thousands of customers being unable to go forth with their planned flights due to the restrictions of 2020 and 2021, the airlines have claimed that consumer protection law put them under no obligation to offer cash refunds to their customers. Therefore, in June 2021, the CMA began their investigation into this contentious area of law. This month, the CMA closed their investigation into the airline companies finding that the consumer protection law entitles passengers to refunds only when the airline themselves cancels the……

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Fairhurst v Woodard: Neighbour Wins Security Camera Data Protection Case

In a series of disputes between neighbours Dr Mary Fairhurst and Mr Jon Woodard, over Mr Woodard’s house security system renovations which included security cameras and a Ring doorbell, a judge has held that Mr Woodard’s security system broke data laws and contributed to the harassment which led to Dr Fairhurst moving home. It was found that Mr Woodard’s Ring doorbell captured images of Dr Fairhurst’s house and garden while the security camera mounted on Mr Woodard’s shed captured almost the whole of Dr Fairhurst’s garden and her parking space. In addition to video and image footage, the cameras collected audio data which Judge Melissa Clarke believed was “even more problematic and detrimental than video data” as it could capture the private conversations of neighbours…….

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The Government’s New Regulations On Winding Up Petitions To Support Businesses Impacted By Covid-19 While Returning Back To The Pre-Pandemic Norm

The Amendment of Schedule 10 Regulations 2021 to the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Act 2020 is set to ease the restrictions over winding up petitions against a corporate debtor, taking effect on 1 October 2021 and set to last until 31 March 2022. As a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Act 2020 was put in place to restrict a creditor’s ability to present a statutory demand and winding up petition against a corporate debtor providing much-needed leeway for struggling businesses against the threat of winding up petitions. Now, from 1 October 2021, those temporary restrictions – which were set to expire on 30 September 2021 – are being amended with new temporary regulations that are set to last until 31……

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Whitestone Looks at Consumer Law Reform

Following numerous consultations, the UK Government plans to reform consumer law. These plans consist of giving regulators powers to impose fines of up to 10% of global turnover in the case of a breach of consumer legislations. Such reform – if actioned – is predicted to ‘toughen’ the regulatory environment in the consumer business sector.[1] Problems lie upon whether all this talk of reform will be actioned, or whether weak enforcement from the consumer and sectoral regulators will leave this reform redundant. If a regulating authority, such as the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) or the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) believe a business to be infringing consumer law, they have no powers to compel the business to change its behaviour – such authorities can merely……

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Surveillance by the State – Data Collection and Human Rights?

The recent uprising and overtaking of the Afghanistan government by the Taliban has caused human right concerns to be pushed to the forefront of the world’s eyes and mind.. Data collection and storage may have devastating consequences for the citizens of Afghanistan. Following Donald Trump’s deal with Taliban officials, Joe Biden still plans to withdraw all American Troops by 31 August with the UK aiming to remove troops but with no fixed date to help prevent a “humanitarian crisis”.[1] The Taliban has suggested the data will be held for the aim of reducing voter and welfare fraud with new surveillance measures due to be implemented, including, digital identity cards for Afghan citizens and the use of biometric information – fingerprinting, iris scans and facial recognition;……

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Warren v DSG: the end of data breach litigation for claimant firms?

  A recent decision made in the High Court may significantly limit data breach litigation by claimant firms.   When a business suffers a data breach involving the personal data of its customers, claimant firms seek to sign up affected customers, issuing multiple claims for damages. Such claims are often for breach of the UK GDPR, breach of confidence, misuse of private information and negligence backed by confidential fee arrangements and After the Event (“ATE) insurance. Due to the perceived complexity of data claims and cost exposure created by ATE premiums, claimant firms have opted to create their own business model fuelled by out-of-court settlements.   In the case of Warren v DSG,[1] the defendants – Currys PC World (“DSG”) – suffered an external attack……

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New Government Regulations Predict First UK Space Launch to Take Place Next Year

  Following the Department of Transports (DfTs) recently introduced regulations, space flights and satellite launches are now permitted to take place in the UK, with the first expected next year. This means that people will be able to visit space for a holiday! This UK launch will mark the first ever launch from any European country, as many European companies currently launch from a site in French Guiana, South America. DfT believe that this new regulatory framework has “a potential £4bn of market opportunities over the next decade”,[1] following plans to build spaceport sites across the UK, including in Scotland and Cornwall. The UK is hoped to become Europe’s most attractive destination for commercial spaceflight activities. DfT have also claimed that space tourism trips and……

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Hijazi v Yaxley-Lennon

  The well-known political Activist known as Tommy Robinson loses High Court Libel Trial On 25 October 2018, a short innocuous altercation between two pupils led to a libel action in the High Court. Both parties to the ‘fight’ were attending Almondbury Community School, Huddersfield. The Claimant, Jamal Hijazi, was 15, and the attacker, Bailey McLaren, was 16. The incident was recorded by another pupil, with the video showing Bailey approach Jamal and call him out multiple times, while Jamal ignored him. The attacker then grabs Jamal by the throat, forces him to the ground, and pours a bottle of water over his face whilst shouting “I’ll drown you”. Upon releasing him, the Jamal simply stands up and walks away. At no point did he……

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Boeing Delays Starliner’s Launch Indefinitely

  Boeing’s astronaut taxi – a CST-100 Starliner capsule – was scheduled to launch Friday, July 30 at 14:53 EDT on a demonstration mission to the International Space Station (ISS), Orbital Flight Test 2 (OFT-2). This was due to be Starliner’s second attempt at an uncrewed meetup with the space station, following a malfunction with the spacecraft’s timer on the mission’s first try in December 2019, causing the mission clock to be off by about 11 hours.[1] Starliner’s debut attempt resulted in the spacecraft getting stranded in the wrong orbit, circling Earth solo for two days before having to return home. Not only was there a timing glitch, but the post-flight analyses by Boeing and NASA revealed 80 corrective actions for the company to take…….

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Khan: Fines for Non-Mask Wearers Remains on TFL Services

  London Mayor Sadiq Khan was amended the TFL conditions of carriage to make the wearing of face coverings mandatory despite the easing of restrictions across England. In a move that opposes Prime Minister Boris Johnson, London Mayor Sadiq Khan has maintained that face coverings should be worn on all TFL (Transport For London) services as a legal requirement in respect of “greater public safety”.[1] Prior to today, 19th July 2021, being dubbed so-called ‘Freedom Day’, it has been an offence under The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Wearing of Face Coverings in a Relevant Place) Regulations 2020 to not wear a face covering on public transport, with an attached fine of between £200-£6400 for non-compliance.[2] In the final stage of lockdown restrictions easing, Johnson recommended that……

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High-rise Lease-holders Can Now Sue Developers to Recover Fire Safety Costs

Following the Grenfell Tower fire in 2017, the country was forced to overhaul its building safety regime, which was later found to be inadequate. Many lease-holders of high-rise buildings have faced large costs to fix defects within their fire safety systems. The government has, now, introduced a plan to help these lease-holders recover such costs,  in introducing a longer period in which to take legal action. The government has now published its Building Safety Bill, which changes the way tall buildings are to be designed, constructed and managed. The Bill has introduced the ‘Building Safety Regulator’ to oversee the process, encourage improvement and implement regulations as well as rendering all dutyholders responsible and accountable for a building’s safety during their relevant stage in the building……

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Virgin Galactic Set for Takeoff After FAA Approval

  Billionaire Richard Branson’s spaceship company Virgin Galactic has been cleared for takeoff just a month after a successful test flight. Virgin Galactic’s first manned space flight departed from its new home port in New Mexico with two pilots. This news comes following approval from the US aviation safety regulator, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), for Virgin Galactic to fly paying passengers to space, having had its general licence since 2016. The spaceflight company says this marks the first time the FAA has licenced a spaceline to fly the paying public.[1] Since the approval of such commercial licence, the share price of Branson’s company increased by 35 per cent. Virgin Galactic has also already obtained 600 ticket reservations for flights from its new base, costing……

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Government Extends Business Support Measures, But Have They Done Enough?

  The Government has now extended the temporary insolvency measures previously implemented, ‘providing further support to businesses during the pandemic’.[1] Following the recent decision to delay the easing of Covid-19 restrictions from 21 June to 19 July, hospitality businesses are required to continue enforcing all social distancing guidelines as were put in place on 17 May, including limited capacity, wearing of masks unless sat down, and table service. Despite this, business support measures including the furlough scheme and VAT reduction on hospitality  were initially confirmed to have not been extended past 30 June following the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson’s, questioning from the media. In addition to this, the ban on commercial tenancy evictions was due to be lifted on this date. This meant that businesses……

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EA Confirmed as Victims of Cybertheft

  Major game publisher Electronic Arts (EA) revealed this month that hackers have stolen valuable information from the company. The attackers downloaded the source code for a number of high-profile games, including FIFA 21, and it is said that around 780GB of data was stolen. It has also been found that the source code for EA’s Frostbite game engine, a proprietary tool used to create dozens of games, as well as various frameworks and SDKs have been appropriated. Exploit on EA services first came to light upon the publication of Motherboard’s report, claiming that the hackers made multiple posts on several underground hacker’s forums, now putting the 780GB of stolen data up for sale on said forums. Hackers are reported to have used stolen cookies……

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China’s Zhurong Rover’s Selfie Released in Celebration of the Mission’s Success

  China’s Zhurong rover landed on Mars on May 15, after spending seven months travelling from Earth and three months orbiting Mars. The robot has since sent a batch of images back. One photo is of itself on Mars – a “selfie”. A second includes the rocket-powered platform that brought the rover to a soft touchdown, from which the vehicle drove down a ramp to get on to the surface. Both machines are adorned with Chinese flags. There was also a picture looking out over the horizon from the landing site, an ancient impact basin in Mars’ northern hemisphere known as ‘Utopia Planitia’. The plain is the largest impact basin in the solar system, with an estimated diameter of 2050 miles. These images were taken……

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KLM Royal Dutch Airline Set to Launch New Routes and Resume Flights from Teesside, England

Following the roll-out of the coronavirus vaccine, demand for long-haul leisure travel is expected to spike. KLM Royal Dutch Airlines is one of many airlines looking to resume operations, though it is also adding new routes to its schedule. KLM is reinstating a number of popular long-haul routes from Schiphol this winter, including flights to Orlando and Phuket four times a week, Barbados, Cancun, and Port of Spain three times a week, and Mombasa twice a week. Chief Executive of KLM, Peiter Elbers, said “this represents the next significant step towards rebuilding [KLM’s] network for the benefit of our customers.” He added that as many as 99 European destinations will be served during the summer of 2021, also significantly strengthening their intercontinental network for this……

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Google Earth’s Newest Feature: Time-Lapse Back 37 Years

Google Earth has recently added an exciting, new feature to its system that allows users to go back 37 years in time and have a look at how the Earth has changed. Debuting in April 2021, this is the biggest update that Google has added so far, and took more than two-million hours for computers to complete. The images collated essentially form one large video – and it is believed to be the biggest video the Earth has ever seen! The equivalent of more than half a million 4K high-resolution videos, the new time-lapse feature enables users to go as far back as the 1980s. Considering the size of the project, Google would not have been able to complete the new feature without help from……

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British Airways to Introduce a Hybrid Working Model After Covid

The onset of COVID wreaked havoc on the tourism and leisure industry – in particular, the travel sector. Major airlines such as British Airways have seen at least 10,000 job cuts being made in an effort to shore up finances as a result of the economic downturn. One thing has come out of the pandemic, however, and that is the increased popularity of remote work. British Airways, like many other companies, have created a hybrid working model during the pandemic so employees are split between the office and home. This model has proved successful for the airline, resulting in more talks about whether working remotely should become part of the company’s future. In March 2021, with more and more of its employees stating that they……

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Denmark to Pioneer Offshore Energy Island

The Danish wind turbine industry is one of the world’s largest – accounting for up to 38% of the world’s market share. In June 2020, following more and more countries looking to build a greener future, Denmark revealed plans to build one of the world’s first offshore energy islands. Curious? We have researched what the island could look like, it’s global strategy, and potential location. Backed by Denmark’s politicians, the energy island is expected to be 120,000sq m with room for 200 offshore wind turbines. As part of the country’s Climate Act, the island will serve around 3 million households with sustainable, renewable sources of energy. The move is radical but looks set to help Denmark on its mission to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by……

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Amazon – What do they say about you?

With Amazon’s profits more than tripling in the first three months of 2021, it is clear that the Covid-19 pandemic and its subsequent restrictions has led to an increase in reliance on orders from the online retailer. It is now, therefore, more important than ever to understand the data published for an Amazon account, and how this can be amended to suit privacy preferences. Here is how you view the information published on your profile through a computer: Log into your Amazon account. Click ‘All’ on the menu bar. Within ‘Help & Settings’ select ‘Your Account’. From the list below ‘Ordering and Shopping Preferences’ select ‘Profile’. You will now be on your own unique Amazon profile, where all the information published on your account will……

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“There are consequences for failing to deal with litigation reasonably” – Challenge the evidence or you could face a wasted costs order.

    Mina Heung, barrister of Whitestone Chambers secures costs award against Bott & Co on grounds of acting unreasonably in bringing claims that were bound to fail. In the cases of Ebdon, Duffy and Liddle v KLM Royal Dutch Airlines[1], District Judge Trigg made a wasted costs order against Bott & Co Solicitors, a Flight Delay Compensation company.    The judgement provides an object lesson on the dangers of pursuing a futile case and for failing to challenge your opponent’s evidence. This article looks at the question of burden of proof in a flight delay compensation claim under the EU Regulation EC 261/2004 and how Bott & Co was met with defeat and ordered to pay for the Defendant’s wasted costs for failing to deal……

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“There are consequences for failing to deal with litigation reasonably” – Challenge the evidence or you could face a wasted costs order.

Mina Heung, barrister of Whitestone Chambers secures costs award against Bott & Co on grounds of acting unreasonably in bringing claims that were bound to fail. In the cases of Ebdon, Duffy and Liddle v KLM Royal Dutch Airlines[1], District Judge Trigg made a wasted costs order against Bott & Co Solicitors, a Flight Delay Compensation company.    The judgement provides an object lesson on the dangers of pursuing a futile case and for failing to challenge your opponent’s evidence. This article looks at the question of burden of proof in a flight delay compensation claim under the EU Regulation EC 261/2004 and how Bott & Co was met with defeat and ordered to pay for the Defendant’s wasted costs for failing to deal with litigation……

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30 years celebrated at London Stansted Airport

March 2021 marks the 30th year anniversary for Stansted Airport since it’s opening in 1991. It’s been a long time since the conception of the airport and the pandemic has made those days of carefree travel seem even more distant – but it is still a cause for celebration! Boasting a rich history, Stansted Airport may have only opened in 1991 but it’s operations have been running for more than 81 years. The first terminal dates back to 1942 and was involved in the major D-day bombings, helping military air force lead more than 600 craft over the beaches of France. Fast forward 40 years and Stansted was just starting construction on it’s new airport in 1986 – at the time the government enquiry accepted……

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The rise and fall of Football Index

The popular self-styled ‘stock market for football’, now in administration and subject of a suspension by the Gambling Commission, enraged thousands of participants by reducing the share price of players leading to mass panic, financial losses and accusations that the company is nothing more than a ‘Ponsi’ scheme. Football index describes itself as ‘the place to buy and sell shares in footballers for real money’. In practice, the platform was an extension of fantasy football but with real cash investments and real cash returns. Participants would buy ‘shares’ in footballers which would fluctuate in value depending on the performances of the players in games and by the demands of the market. By way of an example, if a participant bought 100 shares in a player……

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RIAT 2021 Cancellation – Another Victim of Covid-19

Born from a long tradition of seeing military aircraft at play, the Royal International Air Tattoo (RIAT) is an annual event treasured by many. With the first air-show dating back to 1971, the RIAT holds a rich history and continues to appeal to many from aircraft enthusiasts and pilots alike. Despite its rich success and far-reaching appeal, COVID seems to have brought the event to a halt; a blow to many in the aerospace industry. It was announced yesterday that the 2021 RIAT was cancelled and would be rescheduled to 2022. “It is with great regret that the Directors of RAF Charitable Trust Enterprises have taken the difficult decision to cancel this summer’s Royal International Air Tattoo, which was due to take place at RAF……

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Will life return to normal after COVID?

It has been more than a year since the first outbreak in Wuhan and many of us still remain in lockdown around the globe. The vaccine rollout is starting to happen across some countries – namely the US, UK, and Israel but doubts have arisen regarding its effectiveness. The vaccine itself may protect you from getting seriously ill but it is still unknown whether you can be a spreader and pass the disease on. You also need more than one dose to be sufficiently protected. This, along with the many variants of the disease starting to crop up, has led some to question if life will ever return to normal? It is clear that the world has entered a new normal of some sorts; where……

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Could A Cashless Society Be On The Cards?

COVID 19 has caused a major change in the way people now handle money. Banks have had to transform their services to adapt to the new normal and many shops refuse cash payments altogether. The idea of a cashless society is not new but there has never been a more apt time to make the switch. Though it is unlikely cash will be phased out completely Whitestone predict that society will see a rise in the number of cashless payments being made. The pandemic has caused a shift in our attitudes towards cash with the WHO advising the public to use cashless/contactless methods to reduce the spread of the virus.[1] It is likely that these attitudes will “stick” long after the pandemic but is the……

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Insurance Claims Out of Covid-19. Supreme Court Opens The Door.

The Financial Conduct Authority (Appellant) v Arch Insurance (UK) Ltd and others; appeals to provide clarification over losses resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. Presided over by justices: Lord Reed (President), Lord Hodge (Deputy President), Lord Briggs, Lord Hamblen, Lord Leggatt. Judgment 15 January 2020. Background to appeal: The Financial Conduct Authority, (FCA), brought proceedings to court under the Financial Markets Test Case Scheme following an agreement made with eight insurance companies. The agreement set out to resolve issues of general importance on which immediately relevant English law was needed to aid guidance. The FCA proceeded to represent two policyholders with the main aim to use appeals to clarify whether a variety of insurance policy wordings cover or do not cover business interruption losses resulting from……

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Judges’ landmark ruling in case of mother who called trans woman ‘he’ on Twitter means freedom of speech DOES includes the ‘right to offend’

A landmark ruling has taken place this month with two judges ruling in favour of free speech – even if it encompasses offensive language. The two judges, Lord Justice Bean and Mr Justice Warby, stated that, “freedom to speak only inoffensively is not worth having.” [1]The ruling comes at a time where being ‘woke’ and politically correct is upheld as a fundamental part of modern society. While being aware of social issues and misjustice is key to a democratic and fair society, the ruling does bring up the question of what actually constitutes free speech. Lord Justice Bean and Mr Justice Warby’s ruling presided over the case of conservative mother, Katie Scottow, who had been brought to court after her offensive tweets regarding trans-woman, Stefanie……

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The end of an era: Virgin’s final 747 departs from Heathrow

2020 has been a catastrophic year for airlines around the globe with major carriers being hit hard by the pandemic and subsequent lockdowns. This year has seen the Boeing’s 747 come to a close with many airlines retiring their fleets in the wake of the pandemic, as well as in a bid to fly greener aircraft. October 8th marked British Airway’s last Boeing 747 flight and today Virgin Atlantic’s last 747 flight took off yesterday at 1pm. After its final flight, Virgin’s 747 will be retired to the North of America where it will join Atlas Air just as two of its sisters already have. Marking the end of an era, the Boeing 747 has been an iconic aircraft for many carriers but it has……

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Lockheed Martin’s new spaceport in Shetland a boost to UK space sector plans and economy

A giant in the aerospace industry, Lockheed Martin’s plans for a spaceport in Scotland have been approved and will soon lead to the construction of a port in Shetland. The UK-based arm of the company plans to move its Pathfinder Launch operation to the Shetland site at Lamba Ness, the island of Unst. 2024 is the predicated date of completion and it is estimated that over 600 jobs could be created out of the move as well as a further 350 within Shetland. The spaceport is a promising move and will play an important role in the UK’s growing space sector. We explore what the move means for the UK’s role in the space industry as well as its impact on the prosperity of Britain…….

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Sony updates PS4 to honour Black Lives Matter

Ahead of its PlayStation 5 release on November 12th, Sony have updated the PS4 with a new theme. Centred around the BLM (Black Lives Matter) movement the theme is sleek and simple; gold lines run across the black screen with a fist and the words, Black Lives Matter. Free to download from the PlayStation store, the design delivers a clear message and hits home. 2020 has seen increasing levels of police brutality against black communities and on the 25th May it all came to a head with the death of George Floyd. Sparking outrage among many, the death made the BLM movement better known and triggered a series of worldwide protests. Sony’s new theme speaks up for the movement and is a move that has……

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Proactive ways to increase your productivity wherever you work

Even with schools opening, whether you work remotely or at the office the issue of productivity still lingers. It is one of the key skills employers look for; it directly correlates with high performance. Outside of work productivity can boost your self-esteem and make you feel satisfied with goals you have achieved. Maintaining a productive attitude from 9 to 5 seems draining and impossible but by implementing a few new habits you could see a change. From our research here are our top recommendations for increased productivity which include: Start the day right As soon as you wake up, set yourself a mini challenge. This could be anything from a gentle yoga flow to making your bed in the morning. It may seem small, but……

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UV Cleaning Robots Part Of Heathrow Airport’s Plan To Make Travel Safer

In a bid to instill confidence in passengers Heathrow Airport has deployed UV cleaning robots across its site. With travel corridor exemptions opening up the possibility of increased travel the airport wants to make sure passengers feel as safe as possible when using their services. A carefully thought-out plan has been constructed by the airport that combines stringent cleaning measures with technology to minimise the risk of COVID 19. A spokesperson for Heathrow commented on how the robots would operate with ultraviolet rays being used to, “efficiently kill all viruses and bacteria.” [1] The number of robots set to be deployed is yet to be revealed but it’s thought they will operate in every section of the airport. The company has also introduced a wide……

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Face Coverings; Mandatory In All UK Shops

The world has seen a sweeping change in the way we interact with one another and go about our daily activities. Since June 15th face coverings have been made mandatory on all public transport and this measure is soon set to evolve. With Britain opening up again, the government has announced that face coverings will be mandatory in all shops from the 24th July. The measure comes into force with the hopes of instilling more confidence and security in high-street shoppers and preventing a potential second wave. Germany, Spain and Italy have already enforced such rules and the UK looks set to follow suit. The police will be working in conjunction with the government to enforce the guidance and ensure compliance. Those who refuse to……

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Airbus Mission To Decarbonise Air Travel

Airbus has long been an advocate of using cleaner fuel in the aviation industry. During April the company was set to trial a jet run by hybrid electric engines but the plan was stopped early by the COVID crisis. With many airlines facing economic damage and a cut in employees the French government have introduced a plan to safeguard the aviation industry and have already provided €15bn to the sector.[1] As part of the deal the government wants to see more environmentally friendly jets being created. Biofuels and hydrogen are the current consideration but companies like Airbus are also looking into electric powered flights. The government’s goal is to have a fully carbon-neutral aircraft by 2035 alongside an electric powered jet by 2029. CEO Guillaume……

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HMCTS All Hands to the Pump: Court Recovery Plan

The COVID 19 crisis has called for a change in the way businesses operate and the legal sector has had to undergo many changes to adapt to the current situation. After the initial emergency response to the pandemic in March/April HMCTS has moved into phase 3 which focuses on recovering operations. In an, “all hands to the pump,”[1] response Lord Chancellor Buckland has outlined plans are underway for recovery. Despite the move towards resuscitation the measures outlined have raised many questions and stirred controversy amongst those in the legal sector. Included within the recovery plan are a range of measures to be used across various jurisdictions to ease damage caused by the pandemic. There is a focus on the need for continued social distancing and……

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Focus On Your Well-being; Five Simple Ways To Destress

A recent survey shows that eight out of 10 Britons want the government to focus more on wellbeing than economic growth during the COVID 19 crisis [1] With this in mind we’ve compiled a list of simple things you can do each day to destress and work towards making your well-being a top priority. Carve out “me time” With schools shut until September and new work routines there has never been a more needed time for “me time.” If you live with your family or partner then tensions have likely built during the lock-down. Hectic work schedules, daily home-schooling and pandemic worries will all make home life more stressful. Make a point of having your own alone time where you can let go, refocus and……

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Latest Air Bridge News; What It Means For Your Holiday Plans

The UK is currently entering its third phase and many non-essential businesses are set to reopen on the 4th of July. With the country easing some of its restrictions Grant Shapps, Transport Secretary, has announced that, “the government will begin to ease health measures at the UK border.” Up until now a 14 day isolation period had been imposed by the government for those entering the country. The latest news from the Foreign Office is set to change that with the UK starting to lift its ban on non-essential travel by introducing travel corridor exemption for some countries. Drawn up by the country’s leading scientists, the decision to form air bridge deals and open up borders is being closely monitored and based on current statistics…….

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Government release new regulations ahead of 4th of July easing of lockdown restrictions.

Schedule 2 lists the businesses that must remain closed. The regulations do not specifically address pubs, bars and restaurants. To see the new regulations. Click on the download below.  

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What Holidays Could Look Like Under The New Normal

COVID 19 has ushered in a period of change that has brought about the concept of a new normal. Our schools, our shopping and even the way we interact with one another has been greatly altered. We’ve had to get used to a new way of living during the pandemic and it’s likely that social distancing will remain with us for years to come. England is currently preparing to enter into phase 3 and by the 4th July many non-essential businesses in the hospitality sector will open up again. As we begin to move forward our world will have to become accustomed to a new normal. What will holidays in the future look like and what can you expect? With no vaccine currently available it’s……

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How The Aviation Industry Is Helping To Combat COVID 19

During these challenging times our world has had to adapt to a new normal and undergo radical changes in the workplace. When we think of those directly on the frontline we most often think of doctors and nurses but the aviation industry is playing a big role too. Despite all the setbacks the industry is facing, with a reported $252 billion loss in revenue(1), the aviation industry still remains a vital resource. The importance of the industry has only been made clearer during the pandemic as we have started to become more aware of its contributions to the fight against COVID 19. A fast and effective mode of transport, airplanes have been used to deliver medical equipment and masks all around the world. When there……

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Upcoming Whitestone Chambers Webinar

On Wednesday 1st of July at 6pm Mina Heung, Harriet Ho and Jackson Ng, international barristers at Whitestone Chambers, will be joining Robert Pidgeon, Head of Legal Operations at Whitestone Chambers and mediator of this panel, to host an informative webinar  on The New Rule of Law & Commerce China & Hong Kong Beyond 2020. RSVP by email to law@whitestonechambers.com to secure a place. Webinar details will be provided upon a RSVP being received.

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Specialist Leisure Group enter administration as COVID 19’s grip on the travel industry tightens.

SLG, who operated several businesses that sold holidays and other travel arrangements including Shearings Holidays and National Holidays, entered into administration on the 22 May citing the impact of COVID 19. The group have also advised that 44 UK hotels under their control, will close and not re-open. Over 2,500 jobs have been lost as a result. The SLG group had already furloughed the overwhelming majority of their staff before last week’s news as the group were hit massively by the travel restrictions imposed by the government in response to the COVID-19 crisis. SLG’s various groups primarily specialised in UK based holidays. Their trips were aimed at the over 50s and retired people who enjoyed the variety of locations and the convenience of taking the……

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LSAG advise legal practitioners on how to perform customer due dilligence during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Legal Sector Affinity Group (LSAG) – Advisory Note COVID-19 –and preventing Money Laundering/Terrorist Financing in Legal Practices Legal practices and practitioners should be aware that criminals will continue to operate throughout, and look to take advantage of, the COVID-19 outbreak. This includes laundering the proceeds of crime and terrorist financing, so it is important that everyone is aware of the changing risks. Legal Sector Anti- Money Laundering (AML)/ Counter-Terrorist Financing (CTF) supervisors understand the particular challenges currently facing legal practices and practitioners. This includes the difficulties associated with undertaking customer due diligence (CDD), including appropriate levels of identification and verification (ID&V) – particularly where clients cannot be met face-to-face. Please note legal practices and practitioners in scope of The Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer……

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The Impact of COVID 19 on the Global Aviation Industry

The new Coronavirus, COVID 19, has been wreaking havoc on the international aviation industry for almost 3 months now. A sharp decline in travel demand, strict travel restrictions and general fear among the masses have halted global travel & resulted in huge losses for airlines. The second quarter alone has shown around a 70% drop in demand in the international aviation industry resulting in the loss of 61 billion USD. [1] International Air Transport Association (IATA) has estimated that roughly 25 million jobs in aviation are at risk with 11.2 million & 5.6 million jobs at risk in the Asian-Pacific & European regions alone respectively.[1] Many airports have been shut down by travel restrictions and some have little to no revenue left, which was mainly……

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Can the aviation industry reach a net of zero carbon emissions by 2050?

The aviation industry is currently responsible for around 2% of carbon emissions globally each year1, and this is forecast to triple by 20502. With this projected rate in mind, members of the Sustainable Aviation coalition, which includes most major airlines and airports, as well as aerospace manufacturers, are planning to sign a commitment to reach zero net carbon emissions by 2050, with a third of the reduction being achieved through carbon offsetting. One method of reducing the carbon emissions of aircraft is to invest in the development of technology used in these aircraft, resulting in greater efficiencies of engines and lighter aircraft. By increasing these efficiencies, aircraft consume less fuel, and therefore have lower overall carbon emissions. Rolls-Royce is an example of a manufacturer that……

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The effect of passport openness on social and economic growth

The Henley Passport Index ranks all of the world’s passports by the number of destinations that their holders can access without a prior visa. The Henley Passport Index for 2020 ranked Japan and Singapore as the world’s most travel-friendly passports offering access to 191 and 190 countries respectively.[1] The lowest ranked country is Afghanistan in which a citizen can only access 26 countries without a prior visa. South Korea, which had shared pole position last quarter has dropped to third place alongside Germany. These passports offer access to 187 destinations around the world without a prior visa. One of the most notable shifts in the index was the United Arab Emirates. Over the past five years, the UAE has more than doubled the number of destinations its……

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Government steps in to help Flybe

With Britain’s biggest regional airline, Flybe, reported to be at the verge of collapse this week, news outlets reported that the carrier was trying to secure additional funding and that the accountancy firm Ernst & Young was on standby to handle the possible administration of the Flybe Group if the funding talks were unsuccessful. Normal operations continued and the airline stated that Flybe would continue to provide great service and connectivity for customers to ensure that they could continue to travel as planned.[1] The reasons[2] for the possible collapse of this regional airline stems, to a great extent, from the uncertainty of Brexit which hurt its demand. Moreover, the value of the pound slumped drastically after the referendum in 2016 dealing with the U.K.’s exit……

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Will the proportion of women in high level corporate roles in the Aviation industry increase?

The proportion of women at the highest level of corporate roles in the aviation industry is 3%, which represents one of the lowest levels of female representation across all industries.[1] As of June 2018, 18 women held the role of CEO, President or Managing Director across all commercial airlines. Obstacles to corporate roles can involve stereotyping in the recruitment process as to what are seen traditionally as female and male traits. These stereotypes can cause difficulties as incorrect assumptions may be made about a woman’s personality and skillset, leading recruiters to deem them a poor fit for the organisation.[2] The low visibility of women at the highest corporate levels can also make the environment seem unwelcoming to other women. This has led to a phenomenon……

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Donation rather than recycle

Whitestone Chambers has worked with WeeeCharity to donate computers and other IT equipment to the charity. With the equipment that it has received the charity will be able to continue achieving its following goals: To protect and preserve the environment by recycling electrical waste to help reduce the amount of WEEE Waste that ends up in landfill through waste reduction, recycling, repair, refurbish and for resale back into the community. Train volunteers who are unemployed, or faced with disabilities or learning difficulties, with essential skills and knowledge in a safe working environment to improve their work ethic, to prepare them for full time employment. Relieve financial hardship by the recycling and provision of electrical and electronic items at no cost. Further information about the charity……

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Whitestone Barrister Mina Heung joins the Bar Council’s International Committee.

Congratulations are in order for Mina Heung on her successful application to the Bar Council’s International Committee. From 1 January 2020, Mina will be working on the International Committee to achieve the following aims: To promote the standing and the interests of the Bar internationally; To support the rule of law internationally; To keep abreast of international developments; To inform and educate the Bar about international developments and opportunities; To further the objectives above by cooperation between the Bar and legal professions abroad and by participation in the work of international legal associations and professional bodies; To influence international legal developments; To support the strategic aims of the Bar Council as published. © 2019 Whitestone Chambers www.whitestonechambers.com law@whitestonechambers.com

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From Singapore to Whitestone Chambers

Spending 2 weeks interning at Whitestone Chambers has been an immense blessing, and an invaluable learning experience. Coming from Singapore, a jurisdiction that shares the common law tradition, I had a basic understanding of the legal system in the United Kingdom. My time in Whitestone Chambers has perfectly served to deepen my understanding and knowledge of the workings of the legal system here. Coming into this internship, one of my main objectives was to contrast and rationalise the legal system and culture in the UK with what I was familiar with in Singapore. I tried to be cognisant of this objective throughout my stint at Whitestone Chambers. I particularly enjoyed visiting the numerous courts within and outside Central London. Undoubtedly, the judicial hierarchy and its……

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European Court of Justice rules on airport charges

On 7 November 2019, the European Court of Justice provided a preliminary ruling in Case C-379/18, between Deutsche Lufthansa AG and Berlin (Land of Berlin Germany), as to the interpretation of Directive 2009/12/EC in relation to airport charges [1]. Deutsche Lufthansa, in its capacity as an airport user, contested the approval of a new system of airport charges by Berliner Flughafen GmBH (BFG) for Berlin-Tegel Airport, which is managed by the Land of Berlin. The Land of Berlin as the independent supervisory authority had authorised a new system of airport charges with effect from 1 January 2015. Accepting Lufthansa’s appeal, the referring court held that Lufthansa had standing to bring an action for annulment under German Law if the contested authorisation had an effect of……

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Ryanair carry-on baggage charge is struck down as ‘abusive’ by Spanish Court

A passenger charged €20 by Ryanair to bring an item of carry-on luggage onto the aircraft, the dimensions of which were in excess of that outlined in the company’s general terms and conditions, has been refunded the charge plus interest following the judgment of a Spanish mercantile court. Ryanair had pleaded that the passenger’s carry-on luggage exceeded the limits set out in section 8.3.1 of their General Terms and Conditions of Carriage: 8.3.1.     You may carry one piece of carry-on baggage on the plane, which must be no larger than 40cm x 20cm x 25cm. [1] The policy which came into effect on 1 November 2018 means that any baggage in excess of the above dimensions requires the passenger to pay a €14 supplement to……

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Virgin Galactic becomes the world’s first publicly traded space tourism venture

Virgin Galactic has recently become the world’s first publicly traded space tourism venture. It is a vertically integrated aerospace company within the Virgin Group, pioneering human spaceflight for private individuals and researchers. Virgin Galactic (‘Galactic’) merged with venture capital firm, Social Capital Hedosophia in early October, prior to which Galactic had lost $138 million in the first nine months of that year. It had spent $100 million on research and development for testing rocket-powered space planes ahead of its first commercial flight scheduled for 2020. The resulting company formed through the merger was named Virgin Galactic Holdings, Inc. (“VGH”) and its common stock, units and warrants began trading under the ticker “SPCE” on 28 October 2019. Merging and trading as a public company are milestones……

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Panorama investigation looks at the practice of fuel tankering

A BBC Panorama investigation  into fuel tankering, the practice of filling aircraft with extra fuel to avoid having to refuel at destinations that have a higher fuel charge, has claimed that they have seen documents which show that up to six tonnes of extra fuel can be loaded onto a plane per flight. BA confirmed that it emitted 18000 tonnes of additional carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, last year, by indulging in this cost saving practice. According to Panorama, a recent BA flight to Italy took three extra tonnes of fuel leading to an added 600 kg of carbon dioxide emission whilst only saving £40 in costs. BA told the BBC that fuel tankering is standard practice within the industry to carry additional fuel due……

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Bombardier to sell its Aerostructure Unit to Spirit AeroSystems in $700 Million Deal

Bombardier, a leading manufacturer of planes and trains has reached into a definitive agreement to sell select assets to Spirit AeroSystems, one of the world’s largest tier-one manufacturers and suppliers of aerostructures. It is also acquiring aftermarket service businesses in Belfast, U.K.; Casablanca, Morocco; and its aerostructure maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) facility in Dallas, U.S.A. The deal involves assumption of liabilities, including pension obligations. The assets and after-market service business are being acquired for a cash consideration of $500 Million. Additionally, Spirit Aerosystems is assuming approximately $300 Million in net pension liabilities and approximately $290 Million of government grant repayment obligations, for a total enterprise valuation of $1090 Million, which is equals to 10 times the 2019 estimated adjusted EBITDA of the acquired business…….

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The dawn of the electrical vertical take-off and landing aircraft

The dawn of the “flying taxi” will soon be upon us through the development and manufacture of the electrical vertical take-off and landing (‘eVTOL’) aircraft. The aircraft as envisaged will carry passengers from specially designed Skyports, enabling the use of eVTOL aircraft in built up areas. The Skyports are designed and built through the collaboration of specialists in architecture, design and engineering to produce landing and take-off sites capable of handling up to 1000 landings per hour in a small space; collaboration between Volocopter and Skyports has resulted in the creation of the world’s first full scale air taxi vertiport, which opened in Singapore on 21 October 2019. Uber is one of the main competitors in the eVTOL industry, and it plans to “give riders……

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Beware Cookie Law

Websites that use cookies to track users and their interactions will have to pay close attention to the recent case of Bundesverband der Verbraucherzentralen und Verbraucherverbände — Verbraucherzentrale Bundesverband eV (the ‘Federation’) v Planet49 GmbH (‘Planet49’) Case C‑673/17, 1 October 2019, which clarifies the indication the user must provide as to their consent to the use of cookies. Planet49 organised a promotional lottery accessed via a website. If users wished to take part in this competition, users were required to enter personal details such as their name and postcode on the website. The user was also presented with two boxes to check. The first box one was unchecked and required the user to check it to enter the competition, this would also allow certain sponsors and……

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Flybe to be rebranded as Virgin Connect

After 40 years as the largest independent regional airline in Europe, Flybe has been acquired by the Connect Airways consortium. The Connect Airways consortium was created in December 2018 and consists of 40% ownership by Cyprus Capital, 30% by the Stobart Group, and 30% by Virgin Atlantic Limited. The proposed merger of the consortium received approval from the European Commission on 5 July 2019 [1] on condition that full compliance is met by Connect Airways as to the commitments [2] that it offered, to ensure that it complies fully with competition law. Following the merger in July 2019, Flybe was acquired by Connect Airways and in the near future, the Flybe name will be changed to ‘Virgin Connect’. Switching from the current purple colour schemes,……

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UK passengers concerned about European flights after 31 October 2019.

With the Brexit deadline of 31 October 2019 looming, many airline passengers that have booked flights to European destinations are concerned about flights scheduled after the deadline. Recent research by Which? Travel showed that “a third of flyers are worried that European flights could be disrupted once Britain leaves the EU”. For the near future those passengers can have their fears alleviated. In place is EU Regulation 2019/502 that provides for common rules ensuring basic air connectivity with regards to Brexit, allowing UK planes to fly to European destinations. Article 16 4(b) of the Regulation extended the operation of this Regulation until 30 March 2020; recently the European Commission released a statement on 4 September 2019 extending the effect of the Regulation: “Basic air connectivity (Regulation……

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Nearly 450 Drunk Airline passengers in 2 years

Police figures have shown that nearly 450 passengers have been arrested on suspicion of being drunk in the past 2 years. Freedom of information requests reveal that at least 245 people were arrested on suspicion of being drunk at a UK airport between 1 April 2017 and 31 March 2019. Heathrow, the UK’s busiest airport, reported the highest number of arrests within that time period with 103 passengers, followed by Gatwick with 81, Glasgow with 47 and Liverpool with 40 arrests. Greater Manchester Police and 3 other forces did not provide figures within the time limit so the final figure is expected to be higher. The ages of those arrested range between 20-58. The figures emerged after a woman was arrested at Southend Airport for……

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Lawfulness of bulk hacking powers under the Investigatory Powers Act 2016

This article was first published on Lexis®PSL Corporate Crime on 20 August 2019. Click for a free trial of Lexis®PSL. Corporate Crime analysis: Adam Richardson, barrister at Whitestone Chambers, considers the most recent judicial review challenge brought by Liberty concerning the lawfulness of the bulk hacking powers under the Investigatory Powers Act 2016 (IPA 2016). R (on the application of National Council for Civil Liberties (Liberty)) v Secretary of State for the Home Department and another (National Union of Journalists intervening) [2019] EWHC 2057 (Admin), [2019] All ER (D) 02 (Aug) What are the practical implications of this case? As the claimants effectively lost the case, the existing regime vis-a-vis IPA 2016 still stands—arguably even more firmly than before. As such, there will be no new practical implications to consider other than those already……

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Pressure on BA after customer email mix up.

British Airways have been instructed to reimburse passengers who were mistakenly told in an email that their original journeys had been cancelled and that they should source alternative means of transport. The airline emailed passengers who were not affected in error telling them that their flights had been cancelled and “it is likely that you will not be able to travel.’’ A source from the Daily Mail further explained that the passengers were later angered even more after receiving another email saying that, their flights would proceed as planned. This however was too little too late as some passengers had already acted on the first email and had booked another flight. The Civil Aviation Authority have expressed the fact that “Those affected should not be……

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Plane damaged by bird strike may result in compensation to passengers

An Airbus 321 travelling from Russia to Crimea has crash-landed in a field as a result of damage caused by a flock of birds that were sucked into the plane’s engines. Although there were no deaths caused by the impact, some passengers experienced injuries, and all suffered significant delays. As a result of this the passengers may be able to make a claim under the Montreal Convention 1999 (the ‘Convention’) for a non-EU flight. Article 19 of the Convention states that “the carrier is liable for damage occasioned in the carriage by air of passengers, baggage or cargo” however, the carrier will not be liable if “it and its servants and agents took all measures that could reasonably be required to avoid the damage or……

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Supreme Court rules that all courts and tribunals are subject to the open justice principle

The Supreme Court has ruled in the case of Cape Intermediate Holdings Ltd v Dring (Asbestos Victims Support Groups Forum UK) [2019] that all courts and tribunals that exercise the judicial power of the state are subject to the ‘open justice’ principle. The principles of open justice are that the public can understand and scrutinise the court, thereby enabling the public to understand the issues and evidence that is provided by parties. Civil proceedings have moved from being dominated by oral evidence to proceedings that generate a great deal of written evidence. As this movement has continued, questions have arisen as to how much of the written material placed before the court in a civil action should be accessible to those who are not parties……

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British Airways data breach results in a potential fine of £183m.

British Airways (‘BA’) are facing a historic fine of £183m following a major data breach  reported by the Information Commissioner’s Office (‘ICO’) on 6th September 2018 in which hackers successfully stole customers’ personal data consisting of passenger login details, card details, addresses and travel booking information. The ICO had previously reported that the personal data of around 500,000 passengers was stolen from BA’s website and the mobile app in a different data breach which purportedly started in June 2018. Following the entry into force of the General Data Protection Regulation (‘GDPR’) on 25th May 2018, this is the first penalty for a personal data breach that has been made public and it demonstrates the serious nature of the approach undertaken by the ICO when personal……

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Heathrow’s third runway mass expansion

The potential knock-on effect for the rest of the UK’s airports if the plan for a 3rd runway at Heathrow gets the green light have been revealed and it does not look promising. If Britain wants to meet its climate targets, then no further airport expansions will be possible until 2050. Given that carbon-neutral plane engines are still some way away from becoming the norm, further expansions seem impossible. The Head of the committee on climate change, Lord Deben told Sky News “If Heathrow is built it has to be built within the envelope of emissions which we have allowed for aviation. It has knock-on effects. It means you can’t build similar things elsewhere in the country… It is for the government to decide what……

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North Face – Red Faced Apology Over Wikipedia ‘Hack’

North Face has apologised for manipulating Wikipedia to boost its Google search results. The well-known US clothing brand, which emerged from humble beginnings as a retailer of specialist climbing gear, came under sharp criticism when its new ad campaign video explaining what it had done, was shared online by Advertising Age. In the campaign video, North face proudly announced how they had “hacked” the search rankings using Wikipedia pages and it cost “nothing”. Further boasting how they cleverly noticed; “before going on a trip, everyone does a google search” and “most of the time, the first image is from Wikipedia”, so they “did what no one has done before”. They photographed models wearing their brand in more than 15 adventurous places, including Brazil’s Guarita State……

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Does Social Media = Jail Time?

Fraudulent litigants be warned! Have you been entirely truthful? If not, you may fall foul to your own Social Media history! The recent Court of Appeal judgment in Zurich Insurance PLC v David Romaine, [2019] EWCA Civ 851 (CA), makes it clear that committal proceedings can be brought against a litigant whose Social Media activity, in this case a Facebook account, reveals dishonesty. The claimant issued personal injury proceedings against his former employer for noise induced hearing loss relying on a medical report which stated that he; ‘had not had any noisy hobbies’. The appellant solicitors commissioned an ‘intelligence report’, in which the claimants Social Media history was inspected, revealing that he was a motorbike enthusiast and performed in a live rock band. This was……

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London Stansted is the worst airport for flight delays in 2018

The Press Association has released a report on its analysis of the Civil Aviation Authority, (CAA), delay data, for all scheduled and chartered flights in 2018 across 24 major UK airports. It shows Stansted had the longest average flight delays of any airport in Britain last year, as passengers were kept waiting on average 25 minutes. While the average flight delay across all the featured airports was 16 minutes. Stansted is the fourth busiest airport in the UK and a hub for several low-cost eastern European airlines, as well as being Ryanair’s biggest base, it also covers significant operations by EasyJet and Jet2. A spokesperson for Stansted blamed “a particularly challenging summer last year,” adding that “adverse weather and air traffic control issues had a……

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Wizz Air! Get on board!

The UK’s airline of choice Post-Brexit, (potentially). So, who are Wizz Air and why might they become the UK holiday makers airline of choice Post-Brexit? Jozsef Varadi, Chief Executive Officer of Wizz Air, the Budapest-based airline, which offers routes from London to fast-growing non-EU destinations, takes a refreshingly frank but confident approach in answer to Brexit complications for airlines. Varadi, simply finds the furore around Brexit ‘tiring’ and ‘would like to see the end of it, whatever it is.’ This contrasts with the cautious approach taken by some rivals. EasyJet recently raised concerns about how Brexit will affect demand. No such worries for Wizz Air as, according to Varadi, demand remains robust, while ‘current performance … is pretty solid’, with net profit for the year……

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Norwegian Airlines losses revealed.

Norwegian airlines suffered a loss of £133.5 million in the first quarter of 2019. They are reassessing their financial situation since the impermanent global ban was incorporated on MAX 8 operations as the aircraft was involved in two accidents in a short space of time. The airline currently has eighteen 737 Max 8’s and several deliveries have been placed on hold. The chief executive of Norwegian Airlines said, he has numerous meetings with BA to discuss the negative effects on grounding to eliminate the problems the MAX 8 is causing Norwegian Airlines and the wider industry. He also stated the airline has been doing everything to ensure flights are carried out as normal by using wet lease companies when needed. After suffering such a drastic……

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Samsung Galaxy S10’s connection failure.

Samsung have released their Galaxy S10 in Korea and it is already generating several connection complaints! Korea states that Galaxy S10 users have no problems connecting to 5G, the issue occurs when customers connect to their LTE after being connected to 5G. Interestingly enough the phone does not recover its connection until users have rebooted their phone numerous times. The Galaxy S10 5G is only available in Korea, it is expected to launch in the US on May 16 to Verizons network on a short-term basis. The Galaxy S10 is the fourth smartphone within the Galaxy S10 line-up. In response to the issues, Samsung have delivered the relevant software needed for the phone to switch independently to each network. Regardless it is still bad news……

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Keeping up with airline trends!

In the competitive world of aviation, airlines are constantly trying to outshine their rivals. Aerospace companies are continuously looking at alternatives on how to advance current passenger experience. Over 500 exhibitors attended the annual Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg, this is the biggest showcase for cabin innovation. Several exhibitors presented new in-flight entertainment systems, new seats, lights, materials and creative layout ideas. Below is a list of the key trends discovered at the show. Feel at home. Airlines are going for a “warmer” feeling. Lantal Textiles AG, an aircraft fabric manufacturer produced softer cabin curtains with a plush three-dimensional weave. They also showcased flooring that sets a relaxing atmosphere in the cabin space. Mood lighting is quite a popular element at the moment. Collins Aerospace……

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Apple tracks you!

Apple keeps a record of all frequent locations visited as the iPhone tracks your duration spent at the location and what type of transportation was used to get there. This is done by a small device which logs all your locations and how many times you have visited them by tracking your ‘Significant Locations’. Apple claim this allows them to provide a personalised service such as traffic routes and help in building photo memories. Google also records user’s location data, through location history found if you have a Google account activated on your phone. The location data is encrypted and stored on your iPhone and it is not distributed without consent. Do look at this part of your device, it is a bit creepy. If……

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Wow Air failure leaves thousands of passengers stranded.

Iceland’s Wow Air ceased operations and cancelled their flights resulting in passengers being left stranded. Passengers traveling with Wow Air are advised to book with other airlines. Airlines may offer rescue fares or flights at a reduced fare, the travel editor for the independent said he did not think other airlines would intervene as they have no intention of making a profit from a bad situation. Wow were selling flight tickets until 07:00 on the morning they went bankrupt. There is a possibility of compensation if passengers booked their flights through a package, they may be entitled to get their money back as they were part of an ATOL. If this is not applicable to passengers, then they might be able to claim their money……

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Are Unqualified Advisers Your (McKenzie) Friend? Duty of Care Explained

The High Court has provided helpful guidance as to the duty of care which legal advisors, such as McKenzie Friends, owe to its clients in the recent case of Paul Wright v Troy Lucas (A Firm) & George Rusz. It was ruled that if an unqualified legal advisor hold themselves out as a competent legal professional, then they will owe the same standard of duty of care as a competent legal professional. In 2004, following a negligent operation at the Basildon & Thurrock University Hospital NHS Foundation, Mr Paul Wright, aged 70, was left with three plastic bags inside his body; he suffered severe injuries and was left permanently disabled as a result. Mr Wright sought the assistance of Mr George Rusz, by way of……

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Apple Patents iPhone camera change.

Leaks about Apple’s innovation always seem to come from Apple. Secretly, Apple has lodged a patent about their new iPhone. Apple is going to release an iPhone that will tell you when to take a photo and the camera will open automatically. Yes, you heard that correctly. The hardware for this production has been confirmed and it is due to feature in iPhones this year. Apple explains how this will work. The automatic camera will activate once detecting an intent to take a photograph or video. This will be effective when the phone is placed in a typical photography position, then the camera will open automatically. Apple filed a patent with the US Patent and Trademark Office on 17 January 2019. The motion to detect……

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The demise of the Airbus A380.

Airbus SE have recently announced their decision to stop the production of the model A380 by 2021, which was delivered by Tom Enders the Airbus Chief Executive. The Airbus A380 at the start of its production was the spacious, quieter and more comfortable alternative for passengers. As a result of the halted model production, Airbus has estimated at least 3,500 jobs to be affected. The company’s largest consumer, Emirates are said to be decreasing their order from 53 aircrafts down to a mere 14 aircrafts. The A380 for many years had been a popular aircraft among its buyers and therefore had struggled to keep up with their orders, making their decision a turning point for many in the aviation industry. Despite their popularity, Airbus encountered……

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International Women’s Day

International Women’s Day (March 8) is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women everywhere. It is a celebration of women’s rights. The first International Women’s Day gathering was in 1911 and was supported by over a million people in Austria, Denmark, Germany and Switzerland. It is difficult to say when International Women’s Day began. It can be traced to 1908, when over 15, 000 women marched in New York City demanding voting rights, better pay and shorter working hours. In 1910, Clara Zetkin, leader of the women’s office for the Social democratic party in Germany proposed the idea that every country should celebrate on the same day ‘Woman’s Day’. It was a time when, in the UK, woman weren’t……

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Lithium-ion batteries

The advent of the smartphone and tablet devices in the last decade has led to a sharp rise in the number of portable electronic devices that passengers are carrying on planes. Most personal electronic devices use a rechargeable lithium-ion battery.  A fault or damage to a lithium-ion battery increases the risk that the battery will short circuit and catch fire.  As a lithium-ion battery ages, the risk of a fault with the battery increases.  Therefore, the risk of the battery short-circuiting and catching fire also increases. The increase in the number of personal electronic devices being carried by passengers increase the risk of a lithium-ion battery fire on a plane. While lithium-ion battery fires are still relatively rare, they are increasing.  The Federal Aviation Administration……

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Blanche v easyJet – lifting the veil on ATC decisions?

  The Court of Appeal confirms that compensation under Regulation 261/2004 is not payable by carriers when delays/cancellations caused by air traffic control 1. On 6 February 2019, the Court of Appeal (“CoA”) handed down judgment in the case of Daniel Blanche v easyJet Airline Company Limited [2019] EWCA Civ 69 (“Blanche”). The case concerned whether a court, in determining a claim for flight delay/cancellation compensation pursuant to EU Regulation (EC) No. 261/2004 (“the Regulation”), needed to examine the underlying reasons behind a decision made by air traffic control (“ATC”). Facts of the case The appellant/claimant was booked to travel with the respondent/defendant from Brussels (“BRU”) to London Gatwick (“LGW”) on 10 October 2014 (“the flight”). The flight departed late and arrived into Brussels 5……

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Welcoming 5G this year.

Brand new technology is arriving on our door step. From brick phones to smart phones to wireless technology we are now embracing the fifth-generation cellular, known as 5G. The new innovation will drastically affect other devices, such as security cameras, industrial robots, drones and cars that communicate traffic data. 5G will override the looks of 3G and 4G, by allowing people to download digital media, including whole movies, in seconds. The new market creation will revolutionise video games, sports, shopping and social media, by taking digital media to a whole new level. What is 5G? Essentially 5G defines the incoming of a mobile cellular network together with radio performance, computer components and antennas covering radio signals and exchanging data. To benefit from 5G, users will……

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Celebrities warned about social media conduct.

Whitestone Chambers 4 King’s Bench Walk Temple, London, EC4Y 7DL Tel: 020 7822 8822 Fax: 020 7822 8844 www.whitestonechambers.com Celebrities warned about social media conduct. Sixteen UK based celebrities have entered into a formal agreement with the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) stating that they will not continue to advertise brands on social media without declaring it to their followers and viewers. The CMA launched an investigation after they discovered that numerous celebrities and online influencers were being paid to advertise products without declaring this to their impressionable fan bases. It found that paid product placements were not always being made clear, leading to fears that consumers could mistake them for personal recommendations from their online heroes. The CMA have not gone as far to……

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Top 10 Airlines – 2019 announced by AirlineRatings.com.

Singapore Airlines Air New Zealand Qantas Qatar Airways Virgin Australia Emirates All Nippon Airways EVA Air Cathay Pacific Airways Japan Airlines Singapore Airlines. In 2018 Singapore Airlines came third place. Now they have overshadowed Qantas and Air New Zealand by taking first place. The Airline won ‘Worlds Best Airline 2019’ by AirlineRatings.com due to their innovation, new products and world-renowned inflight service. Singapore Airlines have also begun direct flights from Singapore to New York. Air New Zealand. Former five-time winner falls to second place with best premium economy and best Airline. The Airline has been busy increasing international and domestic markets. Qantas. Received third place, along with winning the best domestic service and best lounges. The Airlines customer approval rating is consistently high, and their……

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Happy New Year & Cyber Security – 6 new steps to consider in 2019.

Malware attacks, data breaches, security hacks and microtargeted personalized advertising all formed part of the digital low life in 2018. In order to keep up with the modern world, technologies must advance. So how does one keep up with security and software protection. With the commencement of 2019 and new software releases, here are a few tips on keeping your digital life free from manipulative use. Create boundaries and abide by them. Research shows the best way to stay safe is by setting boundaries. Agree on what data you are happy to share involving online services and apps and stay bound to it. This is preparation for when you are asked to share data falling out of any agreement.  Consider reducing your time spent on……

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As 2019 starts up – Whitestone looks back at the top stories of 2018.

Apple and Samsung’s ongoing legal battle is over. A legal battle that nobody thought would ever end. Eventually both tech companies settled out of court after arguing all the way up to the supreme court for seven years. The dispute was over ‘stolen tech’. Supreme Court weighs in on location data. The Supreme Court ruled that if your past location data needs to be accessed, the law enforcement must attain a warrant. Prior to this, authorities were able to retrieve the data from a third party with access to that data. The death of Stephen Hawking. Stephen Hawking died at his home in Cambridge on 14/01/2018. He died at 76 after having suffered from Motor Neurone Disease. He was a remarkable physicist and an author…….

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Happy New Year  –  United Airlines ban puppies and kittens from flights

As of January 7th, 2019, United Airlines have banned ALL emotional support animals on long haul flights. United Airlines has recently decided to forbid animals on flights under the influence of Delta. Delta is their biggest competitor who prohibited puppies and kittens on board in December 2018. United is only allowing emotional support cats and dogs to attend flights no longer than eight hours. Puppies and kittens under four months are not permitted to travel on any flights. The new enforcement is effective from January 7th, 2019. However, United has made allowances for passengers travelling with animals who booked before January 3rd. However miniature horses and cats and dogs acting as service animals will be accepted on board. Support and service animals can fly for……

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How ‘common’ is your ATM pin?

It is a common fact that people are naturally bad at selecting tedious and obscure personal identification numbers (PIN). The most common PIN is the staggeringly predictable  ‘1234’.Whilst that is bad, the list of top 15 most common PINs is also an obvious read. Top 15 pins; 1234 1111 0000 1212 7777 1004 2000 4444 2222 6969 9999 3333 5555 6666 1122 (https://gizmodo.com/5946582/the-20-most-common-pins-are-painfully-obvious) Yet people still think they have a ‘tough enough’ PIN, despite most people’s being entirely guessable. The percentage of PIN hacks has increased in 2018 by 12% leaving it at 54%.. Let’s hope we can reduce this percentage in 2019. So, how to come up with a good PIN? First tip, avoid all the choices above! Pick something slightly more mysterious. For……

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The potential impact of Brexit on the e-commerce sector

The potential impact of Brexit on the e-commerce sector Commercial analysis: Adam Richardson, barrister at Whitestone Chambers, assesses the implications for practitioners advising on the e-commerce sector, in both a withdrawal agreement scenario, and a no deal Brexit scenario.   What is the current situation? The current circumstances surrounding e-commerce regarding provisions of goods and services were harmonised under various EU Directives, but primarily the E-commerce-Directive 2000/31/EC. The purpose of the Directive is to remove obstacles to cross-border online services in the EU and provide legal certainty to businesses and citizens in cross-border online transactions. Present harmonisation has allowed easy, transparent trade between nation states within the EU. What are the potential legal implications of Brexit for the e-commerce sector under the withdrawal agreement scenario……

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Does the house always win? Not if responsibility isn’t voluntarily assumed

Does the house always win? Not if responsibility isn’t voluntarily assumed Banca Nazionale del Lavoro SPA v Playboy Club London Limited and others [2018] UKSC 43 Whilst a trial judge had found that duty of care is owed to a party’s undisclosed principle, the Court of Appeal disagreed. The issue before the Supreme Court was whether a bank was liable for a negligent credit reference to an undisclosed principal whom had relied upon it. Pursuant to their policy, Playboy Club London, (‘the Club’), requires credit references for the use of their cheque-cashing facilities at their club. However, to avoid disclosing the purpose of the reference, the Club utilises Burlington Services Ltd, (‘Burlington’) to request these references from the banks of gamblers. In October 2010, Hassan……

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Hall Fire Melts Away Frozen-Food Company’s £6.6 million Claim

In Goodlife Foods Limited v Hall Fire Protection Limited [2018] EWCA Civ 1371, the Court of Appeal held that the express alternative of insurance meant that a ‘far-reaching’ exclusion clause was reasonable pursuant to Unfair Contract Terms Act 1977. Goodlife, a frozen-food production company, purchased a fire detection and suppression system from Hall Fire a year after being provided with a quotation. Not only were Hall Fire’s T&Cs attached to both the quotation and acknowledgment of order, but also the face of the quotation drew attention to Clause 11, which read:   ‘We exclude all liability, loss, damages or expense consequential or otherwise caused to your property, goods, persons or the like, directly or indirectly resulting from our negligence or delay or failure or malfunction of……

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A striking decision? Industrial action ruled not extraordinary by European Court

The CJEU holds that compensation under Regulation 261/2004 is payable by carrier for delays or cancellations caused by its own employees’ wildcat strike 1. On the 17 April 2018, the Court of Justice of the European Union(“CJEU”) handed down judgment in the joined cases of Helga Krüsemann and Others v TUIfly GmbH (“Krüsemann”) [1,2]. 2. The applicants in the proceedings all had bookings with TUIfly for flights provided by the carrier between 3 and 8 October 2016. All those flights were cancelled or subject to delays equal to or in excess of three hours upon arrival due to an exceptionally high number of absences on grounds of illness amongst TUIflystaff, following the carrier’s notification to its staff of company restructuring plans. 3. The CJEU noted that whilst absenteeism……

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Who’s the operating carrier? Not the lessor rules the European Court

The CJEU holds that compensation under Regulation 261/2004 is not payable by the carrier who operated the flight under a wet lease   1. On 4 July 2018, the Court of Justice of the European Union (“CJEU”) handed down judgment in the case of Wirth and Others v Thomson Airways Ltd (“Wirth”)1. The case concerned who the operating air carrier was within the meaning of Article 2(b) of Regulation (EC) No. 261/2004 (“the Regulation”) in respect of a delayed flight the claimants had been carried on. 2. The claimants had confirmed bookings for a flight from Hamburg in Germany to Cancún in Mexico, bearing a flight code which referred to TUIFly. The booking confirmation stated that the bookings were issued by TUIFly, but that the……

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O’Connor v Bar Standards Board – Disciplinary proceedings. A continuous process.

Portia O’Connor won a landmark decision earlier this month when the Supreme Court unanimously decided to allow her appeal against the Bar Standards Board (BSB) and find that her claim was not time barred. This decision stems from a line of litigation starting in 2010 when the BSB Complaints Committee brought 6 disciplinary charges against Ms O’Connor.  In May 2011 the Disciplinary Tribunal found 5 out of the 6 allegations proved. Ms O’Connor appealed to the Visitors of the Inns of Court who overturned the decision. Following her appeal, in 2013 Ms O’Connor issued proceedings against the BSB alleging a violation of Article 14 of the European Convention on Human Rights read in conjunction with Article 6 ECHR, contrary to section 6 of the Human……

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The Court of Appeal’s Decision in Wood v TUI Travel plc T.A. First Choice 2017 EWCA Civ 11

The Court of Appeal was recently asked whether a couple could recover damages pursuant to the implied condition in section 4(2) of the Supply of Goods and Services Act 1982, (“the 1982 Act”), for harm suffered whilst on an all-inclusive holiday. In April 2011, Mr and Mrs Wood travelled to the Dominican Republic on holiday.  Whilst there Mr Wood suffered acute gastroenteritis and had to be hospitalised for four days.   It was accepted by His Honour Judge Worster that the couple only consumed food provided by the hotel during their stay.  He concluded that the provision of food and drink to Mr and Mrs Wood constituted the supply of good and services under the 1982 Act and awarded them £24,000 in total compensation. First Choice……

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The Final Destination? The Court of Appeal’s decision in Gahan v Emirates

The Court of Appeal holds that compensation under Regulation 261/2004 is available for delay on connecting flights which start or end outside of the EU. 1. On the 12 October 2017, the Court of Appeal delivered judgment in the joined cases of Gahan v Emirates and Buckley and ors v Emirates [2017] EWCA Civ 1530, in which both the Civil Aviation Authority and the International Air Transport Association intervened. Flying Emirates through Dubai 2. Miss Thea Gahan had booked with Emirates to travel from Manchester to Dubai (the first leg) and then from Dubai to Bangkok (the second leg). Her first leg was delayed so that she arrived in Dubai 3 hours and 56 minutes late, missing her connecting flight, and finally arrived in Bangkok……

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O’Connor v Bar Standards Board Disciplinary proceedings. A continuous process

Portia O’Connor won a landmark decision earlier this month when the Supreme Court unanimously decided to allow her appeal against the Bar Standards Board (BSB) and find that her claim was not time barred. This decision stems from a line of litigation starting in 2010 when the BSB Complaints Committee brought 6 disciplinary charges against Ms O’Connor. In May 2011 the Disciplinary Tribunal found 5 out of the 6 allegations proved. Ms O’Connor appealed to the Visitors of the Inns of Court who overturned the decision. Following her appeal, in 2013 Ms O’Connor issued proceedings against the BSB alleging a violation of Article 14 of the European Convention on Human Rights read in conjunction with Article 6 ECHR, contrary to section 6 of the Human……

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Genuine Discretion vs Absolute Contractual rights

Business contracts have become the language and form of commercial transactions. Their ubiquity is only surpassed by their functionality. They are useful for establishing one parties rights and obligations towards others as well as available remedies and dispute resolution mechanisms. Contracts can also confer powers upon a party to decide on issues that affect another party. As useful as contracts are it is not always the case that all their terms are in writing. Terms are often implied by statue, common law or other mechanism and this can impact the way the contract is performed. Therefore, it can be the case that the interpretation and performance of a contract is not governed by the wording alone. This is the case when exercising a “genuine discretion”……

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Some risk for Great Reward: Longford Capital Secure Massive Investment for Litigation Funding

Litigation funding appears set to continue its exponential growth, with litigation funder Longford Capital Management LP announcing in September of this year that it had managed to raise a $500 million fund to support its litigation portfolios. Longford Capital is a private investment company that provides funding to law firms, businesses, and individuals involved in large commercial disputes. Typically, this means claims worth between $25 million and $1 Billion. Litigation funding covers lawyer’s fees and expenses incurred during litigation, in return for a piece of the settlement/ judgment if the case is successful. If unsuccessful, the client does not owe the funder anything. This form of investment seems to be attracting investors from numerous sectors looking to take advantage of this new asset that isn’t……

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Flight makes emergency landing after wife secretly discovers husband cheating on her

For many, the design and release of “Touch ID”, a feature on all iPhones since 2013’s iPhone 5S,[1] has changed the way we access our phones and protect the private information contained on them. Rather than requiring a code, Touch ID allows phone users to unlock their device[2] by holding their fingerprint over a touch-sensitive button. Passengers on Qantas flight QR-972 from Doha to Bali may now dispute the apparent advantages[3] of such instant access, after an argument between a husband and wife caused the pilot to make an emergency landing in Chennai on Sunday, 5 November. The wife, who was allegedly intoxicated, used her sleeping husband’s fingerprint to unlock his phone and discovered incriminating messages in his inbox. She apparently became aggressive with the……

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A bitter taste in the mouth of travel providers? The Court of Appeal’s Decision in Wood v TUI Travel plc T.A. First Choice 2017 EWCA Civ 11

The Court of Appeal was recently asked whether a couple could recover damages pursuant to the implied condition in section 4(2) of the Supply of Goods and Services Act 1982, (“the 1982 Act”), for harm suffered whilst on an all-inclusive holiday. In April 2011, Mr and Mrs Wood travelled to the Dominican Republic on holiday. Whilst there Mr Wood suffered acute gastroenteritis and had to be hospitalised for four days. It was accepted by His Honour Judge Worster that the couple only consumed food provided by the hotel during their stay. He concluded that the provision of food and drink to Mr and Mrs Wood constituted the supply of good and services under the 1982 Act and awarded them £24,000 in total compensation. First Choice……

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Excessive service charges and what to do about them

Background Service charges are fees that homeowners often commit to pay under the terms of the lease they enter into when they purchase their homes.[1] They are increasingly common in share-of-freehold properties, and commonly include the costs of insurance, lighting, maintenance, cleaning and the repair of common parts such as lifts and gyms, as well as fees for the purchase, sale, sublet or alteration of a flat. They can also effect the purchase of some freehold properties. In recent years, such charges have spiralled and are often excessive, both in their amount and in exchange for the quality of service received. Research by Direct Line for Business indicates that a third of management companies hiked service charges in the years 2014 to 2016, pushing the……

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New aviation insolvency rules suggested in wake of Monarch collapse

In the early hours of the morning on 2 October 2017, Monarch Airlines flight ZB3785 from Tel Aviv to Manchester touched down. It was to be the Airlines’ last flight, just under 50 years since its first, when its Bristol 175 Britannia 300 turboprop landed in Madrid.The collapse of the company resulted in the largest ever peacetime repatriation exercise, during which the Government and the Civil Aviation Authority, (the “CAA”), brought 110,000 stranded passengers back to the UK, running 700 flights over a two-week period. Commenting on the operation, Chris Grayling, Secretary of State for Transport, said that “[t]he CAA has essentially set up one of the UK’s largest airlines to conduct it”. The Government has wasted no time in suggesting that the time has……

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Government begins crackdown on fraudulent holiday sickness claims following landmark private prosecution

Background In June 2015 and July 2016, Paul Roberts, Deborah Briton and their two children visited the ever-popular holiday destination of Mallorca, the largest of the Balearic Islands. Upon return to the UK after their 2015 holiday, Ms Briton posted on her Facebook account: “Safely home after two weeks of sun, laughter, fun and tears. Met up with all our lovely holiday friends who made our holiday fab”. She similarly posted after the 2016 holiday: “Back home after a fantastic holiday, my favourite so far”. Notwithstanding their evident enjoyment of their holidays, the couple instructed solicitors in August 2016 and claimed against the hotel for £20,000 compensation after gastroenteritis, (also known as “Spanish tummy”), allegedly ruined their holidays. The letter before claim stated that: “Our……

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The Final Destination

The Court of Appeal holds that compensation under Regulation 261/2004 is available for delay on connecting flights which start or end outside of the EU. 1. On the 12 October 2017, the Court of Appeal delivered judgment in the joined cases of Gahan v Emirates and Buckley and ors v Emirates [2017] EWCA Civ 1530, in which both the Civil Aviation Authority and the International Air Transport Association intervened. Flying Emirates through Dubai 2. Miss Thea Gahan had booked with Emirates to travel from Manchester to Dubai (the first leg) and then from Dubai to Bangkok (the second leg). Her first leg was delayed so that she arrived in Dubai 3 hours and 56 minutes late, missing her connecting flight, and finally arrived in Bangkok……

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Note On Costs

COST PRINCIPLES From the White Book and Cook on Costs CPR PARTS 44-47 PART 44 CPR – GENERAL RULES ABOUT COSTS I. SUMMARY OF PART 44(2) CPR A.THE COURT’S DISCRETION AS TO COSTS 44.2(1)- the court has a discretion as to (a) whether payable; (b) amount; and (c) when they are paid 44.2(2) – general rule is that costs follow the event, i.e. the unsuccessful party pays costs of successful party; but (b) the court may make a different order. 44.2(4) – court must have regard to all the circumstances, including: (a) the conduct of all the parties; (b) whether a party has succeeded on part of a case even if unsuccessful overall; and (c) any offer to settle which does not have Part 36……

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Pre-Action Protocol for Debt Claims

The Pre-Action Protocol for Debt Claims, (the “Protocol”), comes into force on 1st October 2017. The following article examines the concept of ‘debt’; this article focuses on the purpose, procedure and effects of the Protocol. The objective of a Pre-Action Protocol is to prescribe the conduct the court expects the parties to take prior to commencing legal proceedings. In line with Lord Jackson’s 2010 review of litigation costs, the Protocol aims to encourage early communication and exchange of information and documents between the parties so to enable them to resolve the dispute without litigation. This Protocol expounds the new procedure for a business, (the “creditor”), to follow when claiming repayment of a debt from an individual, (the “debtor”). It does not concern debts between businesses,……

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LATEST – Multi-Track Fixed Costs

Lord Justice Jackson has tabled plans for extending fixed recoverable costs. He conceded that fixing it would not be possible without reform to procedures. Having previously suggested that fixed costs could be applied to all claims up to a value of £250,000, Jackson’s latest proposals account to a significant scaling back. His report proposed finishing the job of introducing a f…

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Temple Women’s Forum Cross-Profession Networking Garden Party: Chambers’ Perspective

The Head of Chambers sponsored female members of chambers to take part in the Women’s Forum. We were delighted to attend the Temple Women’s Forum Garden Party last week. This annual event was kindly ran by the Temple Women’s Forum, an organisation set up in 2012 with the view to supporting and encouraging women practitioners and judges throughout their careers at the Bar or …

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Barrister’s wardrobe malfunction hits the headlines

Over the weekend, Whitestone Chambers newest tenant, Matthew Gillett, went viral on Twitter and made it onto the sport’s pages of the BBC website following a sartorial slip. Matthew is a Bristol City fan and season ticket holder. He pre-ordered the away shirt for the forthcoming 2017/18 season and when it arrived, all looked to be in order. However, after having worn it for a marathon training run…

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In-Flight WiFi: How Gogo achieved its dominance

In-Flight WiFi: How Gogo achieved its dominance The in-flight WiFi provider ‘Gogo’ has a reputation for poor speed and connectivity, with travelers frequently complaining of the system’s slow speed compared to its price (costing up to $60). However, with Gogo possessing 80% of the market share the consumer often has no choice but to choose it as their in-flight WiFi provid…

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RULE 44. 11 – COURT’S POWERS IN RELATION TO MISCONDUCT:

Part 44 of the Civil Procedure (Amendment) Rules 2013 (SI 2013/262) was re-enacted on 1st April 2013 and concerns the court’s powers in relation to misconduct. incur Where a party (a) fails to comply with a court rule in assessment or summary proceedings, or (b) acts unreasonably or improperly before or during proceedings the court may disallow all or part of the costs which are being assessed or order the party at fault or that party’s legal representative to pay costs which that party or legal representative has caused any other party to incur.

The misconduct extends to the legal representative of a party as well as to the party personally and includes both summary assessment and detailed assessment proceedings and refers to any failure to comply with the provisions of Part 47 and any direction, rule, practice direction or court order.

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The CJEU’s striking decision – Peskova examined

The CJEU’s striking decision – Pešková examined On 4 May 2017, the Court of Justice of the European Union (“CJEU”) handed down judgment in the case of Marcela Pešková, Jirí Peška -v- Travel Service A.S. (C-315/15)[1] (“Pešková”). The case concerned the central question of whether a bird strike to an aircra…

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Mobile technology and the future of construction rental

Mobile technology and the future of construction rental Leasing construction equipmentis often a costly and time-consuming process. The equipment needs to be sourced, contracts need to be drawn up and signed, and delivery needs to be arranged. Getting the best deal might involve looking up dozens of potential providers to get quotes. Those “in-the-know” in the industr…

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CASE SUMMARY: THE HIGH COURT DISCOURAGES MISUSE OF PRECEDENT R

Judgement was handed down on 12 May 2017 in Findcharm Limited v Churchill Group Limited [2017] EWHC 1108 (TCC) (available here). Parties making a tactically low Precedent R costs budget response in the hopes that the court will perform its own assessment to their advantage may instead find the court agreeing to the other party’s costs budget in full.

PRECEDENT R

Under the new Precedent R each party is required to comment on the costs budget of the other. This is designed to oblige each party to a dispute to adopt a realistic approach to the budget of the other and to help identify the real dispute between the parties as to costs.

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Saving the Environment: The Prospect of Electric Aircraft

The electric car, once only the domain of eccentric Sci-Fi movies, has now well and truly found its way into everyday consumer life. So, what’s next for the world of fuel innovation? Will we really be able to power commercial flights using just electric fuel, as we now can cars? A start-up company formed just last year believes we will. The goal of Wright Electric is to make every short-hau…

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BIRD STRIKES RULED AS “EXTRAORDINARY CIRCUMSTANCES” BY THE EUROPEAN COURT OF JUSTICE

A collision between an aircraft and a bird may now be defined as an ‘extraordinary circumstance’, according to the Court of Justice for the European Union (“the Court”) in a judgment delivered on 4 May 2017.

The ruling means that any collision with birds may exempt an air carrier from the need to pay compensation under Regulation (EC) No.261/2004 (“the Regulation”) to passengers in respect of flight cancellations or delays of over three hours.

The case concerned Ms Marcela Pešková and Mr Jirí Pešká, who encountered a long delay to their flight from Burgas (Bulgaria) to Ostrava (Czech Republic) in August 2013 with the Czech airline Travel Service. The aircraft set to complete their trip had already flown from Prague to Burgas, Burgas to Brno and from Brno to Burgas before commencing their journey.

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HOW IN-FLIGHT WI-FI WORKS

We’ve all had the same problem: you walk too far away from your Wi-Fi router and, all of a sudden, your Wi-Fi stops working. We all know that it’s simply because the router’s signal isn’t strong enough to reach you that extra few feet away. There is sadly a limit on the strength of Wi-Fi connectivity. But, if Wi-Fi is so dependent upon your proximity to a router, doesn’t it seem strange that Wi-Fi can work in an aeroplane, 35,000 feet above the ground?

So, how does this technology work? Is the answer routers in the sky? Or an invisible cable dropped down to the ground to keep you connected, as you travel at 900 km/h through the air? Close.

More and more commercial airlines are offering their passengers on-board Wi-Fi, whether free of charge or for an extra add-on fee, and they’re all using one of two ways to do it.

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A STEALTH DEATH TAX? THE LORD CHANCELLOR INCREASES PROBATE FEES

The government ignored opposition and is going ahead with the proposed probate fee increase. For estates worth over £2 million the fee could now be £20,000

WHAT IS PROBATE?

Probate describes the legal and financial processes involved in dealing with the property, money and other assets of the deceased. This normally involves the appointment of an executor who will deal with the deceased’s estate.

The government is to increase probate fees and thereby seeks to generate roughly £300m. The Joint Committee on Statutory Instruments raised concerns about the hike, in particular whether the proposed fees were proportionate.

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LORD CHANCELLOR LIABLE TO COMPENSATE FOR JUDGE’S “GROSS AND OBVIOUS IRREGULARITY”

The Court of Appeal held in a unanimous decision on 10 April 2017 in the case of LL v The Lord Chancellor [2017] EWCA Civ 237 (available here) that a claim can be brought against the Lord Chancellor following a High Court judge’s ‘gross and obvious irregularity’.

Jackson LJ, with whom King and Longmore LJJ agreed, stressed that this decision did not traverse the long-established principle of judicial immunity from suit and should not be considered ‘the thin end of the wedge’ for claims against judges as this case was ‘unusual’ and ‘exceptional’.

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AEROTOXIC SYNDROME NOT A PROPER ISSUE TO BE EXAMINED IN THE INQUEST INTO THE DEATH OF BRITISH AIRWAYS CO-PILOT

The inquest into the death of British Airways co-pilot Richard Westgate commenced on 6 April 2017 at the Salisbury Coroner’s Court.

WHAT IS AEROTOXIC SYNDROME

“Aereotoxic syndrome” is the term given to the illness caused by exposure to contaminated air in jet aircraft. The condition has not been recognised by medicine and claims of health effects were found to be unsubstantiated by the House of Lords Science and Technology Committee (The report can be found here.). Cabin air contamination is said to occur in the following way.

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CASE SUMMARY: THE SUPREME COURT CLARIFIES THE MEANING OF “REGULARLY”

Judgement was handed down in Isle of Wight Council v Platt [2017] UKSC 28 (available here). The Supreme Court provided guidance on what ‘failed to attend regularly’ meant in the context of the offence contrary to section 444(1) of the Education Act 1996.

THE FACTS

On 30 January 2015, Mr Platt, the father of a child, (‘Mary’), sent a letter to the school attended by the child requesting Mary to be absent during term time. This was for the period between 12 April and 21 April 2015. On 9 February 2015, the head teacher refused the request. Coincidentally, Mary’s mother, who had been separated from Mr Platt, had also taken Mary on holiday in February 2015, which had not been authorised by the school either.

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GLOBAL V AABAR: THE COURT OF APPEAL STATE THAT CONTRACTUAL NEGOTIATIONS SHOULD BE CLEAR AND UNEQUIVOCAL

In the recent case of Global Asset Capital Inc and another v Aabar Block S.A.R.L and others [2017] EWCA Civ 37, the Court of Appeal held that the High Court was wrong to find that following a ‘subject to contract’ offer letter, a contract was concluded during a telephone call which was inconsistent with subsequent communications.

BACKGROUND:

For the purposes of the appeal the following version of events was accepted. On 23 April 2015, the claimants sent a letter marked ‘without prejudice – subject to contract’ wherein they proposed to pay €250 million for certain rights. On 5 May 2015, the second claimant was informed by the second defendant’s CEO that a board meeting was due on 6 May 2015 where the letter would be considered. On 6 May 2015, the CEO of the second defendant telephoned the second claimant. The claimants case was, that during the call a contract had been agreed subject to two conditions.

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RULE 16.3(7) – STATEMENT OF UNDER VALUE TO BE INCLUDED IN THE CLAIM FORM?

Sir David Eady J delivered a judgment on 30 March in the case of Mohamed Ali Harrath v Stand for Peace Limited and Samuel Westrop [2017] EWHC 653 (QB) (available here) in which he held that a claimant is entitled to recover damages that exceed the statement of value included in the claim form.

The first defendant’s website described the claimant as a “convicted terrorist”, per paragraph 3 of Eady J’s judgment, those words were “plainly seriously defamatory to the claimant”. At paragraph 6, Eady J held that there “simply was no evidence to support the allegation of terrorism”.

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THE AIR ACCIDENTS INVESTIGATION BRANCH PUBLISHES REPORT ON THE SHOREHAM AIR DISASTER

The Air Accidents Investigation Branch published its report into the accident that occurred in Shoreham on 22 August 2015. The sole purpose of the investigation and the report is the prevention of accident and not apportioning blame. This is a brief summary of the key findings as set out in the report.

The normal technique for this manoeuvre was for the aircraft to enter it at 350 KIAS (Knots indicated air speed). In fact, the Hawker entered its ascent at 310 KIAS. The aircraft’s speed was varied and there was not full thrust as the aircraft was in the ascending trajectory of the manoeuvre. There is no evidence of any pre-existing mechanical defect that would have prevented the engine from responding to the pilot’s throttle inputs.

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