Stamp Duty Land Tax UPDATE


We have seen many articles in the news lately concerning the complexity of the rules around the stamp duty surcharge which is causing buyers to pay too much tax or even abandon purchases in the mistaken belief that they will have to pay the higher rate.

Pre and Post-Nuptial Agreements


Nobody likes to think that their marriage or civil partnership may one day come to an end. All the same it is sensible to consider your financial position in the event your relationship does irretrievably break down.

Relief from Sanctions – has the Court become more lenient?


For a number of years now the Court has adopted a hard stance in respect of granting relief from sanctions as can be seen from the well-trodden paths set down in the cases of Mitchell and Denton. However, a recent case in the Chancery Division of the High Court suggests the Court’s stance may be softening.

Modernisation of the Conveyancing process


‘Modernising the home moving process’ is the title of the recently released whitepaper by the Conveyancing Association (“The CA”). The paper sets out the results of the The CA’s research and consultations with key stakeholders across the property industry.

“Portner blushes red for the British Heart Foundation”


With Valentine’s love in the air, Portner decided to shoot cupid’s arrow in the direction of the British Heart Foundation.

Mirror wills vs Mutual wills


When it comes to writing a Will, many couples wrongly believe that only a single will is required for the pair of them. In fact, every individual who wishes to make a will requires their own separate will regardless of whether the intentions of the couple are the same. Each Will must be signed by the individual and witnessed in the correct manner.

Challenging Administration Charges under a lease – A warning!


The recent case of Avons Freehold Ltd v Garnier [2016] UKUT 477 (LC) considered whether an amount paid by a leaseholder for granting retrospective consent to alterations had been agreed by the leaseholder or whether it remained open to the First Tier Tribunal (“FTT”) to determine the reasonableness of the charge.

Private Prosecution - Is this an option for you?


A private prosecution is a prosecution started by a private individual or organisation, such as the RSPCA, who is not acting on behalf of the police or other prosecuting authority. In short, anyone can bring a private prosecution. The right to do so is contained within section 6 (1) of the Prosecution of Offences Act 1985.

Airbnb lettings - Are you in breach of your Lease?


A very important Upper Tribunal Decision has concluded that in most instances short term lettings such as Airbnb lettings will be in breach of residential flat leases. This is welcome news to landlords and many owner occupier flat owners who have complained of problems arising out of Airbnb-type short term lets, but unwelcome news to others.

The new ‘basement tax’ set to hit wealthy London home owners


Westminster City Council is to impose a “basement tax” on those proposing to develop basements and basement extensions as a condition for receiving planning permission which will see residents paying an average levy of £8,000.00.