Website and email requirements for Companies

As of 1st January 2007 UK companies and LLPs require the following information on their website and in their e-mails:

  • • The company name (this might differ from the trading name)
  • • The company registered office (which must be a geographical address not a PO Box)
  • • The company’s registration number and country of registration
  • • An e-mail address where the company can be contacted (requirement not necessarily for e-mails)
  • • If the company is a member of a trade or professional association, membership details, including any registration number (requirement not necessarily for e-mails)
  • • It is also advisable but not essential for the business to place its VAT number on the website and e-mails as well.
    Note – the information must be clear and easily accessible. However, for a website, it does not need to appear on every page; for example, the information can be included on an “about us” or “legal” page. For e-mails, the information can be contained in a footer.

Contact us : reina@bizlawuk.co.uk to see how we can help your business be compliant with UK laws.

Use of the word “FREE” in marketing promotions

Use of the word “FREE” in marketing promotions

The Advertising Standards Authority is the UK’s independent regulator of advertising across all media, whose work includes acting on complaints and proactively checking TV, Radio, print and online media to take action against misleading, harmful or offensive advertisements, sales promotions and direct marketing.

If they judge an ad to be in breach of the UK Advertising Codes, it must be withdrawn or amended and the advertiser must not use the approach again.
Today we shed some light on the CAP rules it follows for Sales Promotions:
In recent years, the ASA has published several adjudications on the use of “free” in marketing communications, a claim that marketers and consumers have often found confusing.
Some consumers expect “free” promotional goods to be entirely without cost and in some promotions consumers receive something for absolutely nothing, for example, a free product sample handed out to passers-by. But the Code allows a free item to be conditional on the purchase of other items (see below) and promoters may make a minimal charge for obtaining a so-called “free” item.
For example, promoters may charge the uninflated cost of postage (though front-page flashes offering “free” goods should indicate that it is extra, for example “plus postage”). Promoters wishing to offer ‘free’ goods cannot legitimately charge for anything other than postage, such as packaging, packing, administration, handling, insurance etc.
The question of whether a product or service should be referred to as “free” or “inclusive” has proved most troublesome in recent years. Broadly, if a product is offered “free” as part of a conditional-purchase promotion that is unlikely to breach the Code but marketers may not describe an individual element of a package offer as “free”: the proper term is “inclusive”.
The Code allows “free” to be used if customers are required to buy other items – a conditional-purchase promotion – provided their liability for all costs is made clear, the quality or composition of the paid-for items has not been reduced and the price of the paid-for items has not been inflated to recover the cost of supplying the free item. If the item that is being described as “free” is genuinely separate from and additional to the item that the customer is required to pay for, the offer qualifies as a conditional-purchase promotion and the item may legitimately be described as “free”. An offer can satisfy the criteria for being a conditional-purchase promotion in one of two ways: (i) the paid-for item is separable from the free item for example, a free lipstick with the purchase of a women’s magazine or (ii) the paid-for item has an established price and is usually sold alone without the free item, for example a chocolate bar with 50% extra free.

For the full article or any advice on how we can help minimize risk please email us on reina@bizlawuk.co.uk

Advertising laws

It is important to get your ad campaigns checked before they get published to prevent bad publicity should they get pulled up . The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) through its CAP and BCAP Codes regulates Adverts in the UK for print, online and broadcast media They expect all advertising online to be legal, decent, honest and truthful.  They also list traders who continue to make claims on their online sites that do not comply with the UK Advertising Code despite repeated requests for changes from their Compliance teams. Details of each non-conforming trader will remain in place until they have appropriately amended their marketing in line with the Advertising Code.

For more information on how we can help prevent risk for your business and marketing strategy contact Reina D’costa at reina@bizlawuk.co.uk or visit us at http://www.bizlawuk.co.uk to find out how we can help.

Employment law updates

 

The Government has announced an increase to the compensation awards that can be made by the Employment Tribunals and to the statutory rates used to calculate certain employee payments.

From 6 April 2014 the following increases will come into force:

  • week’s pay (used for calculating statutory redundancy payments and certain tribunal awards) will increase from £450 to £464.
  • The maximum compensatory award for a successful claim of unfair dismissal will rise from £72,000 to £76,574 (although since 29 July 2013 these awards are the lower of 52 weeks’ pay and the maximum compensatory award).
  • The maximum basic award for unfair dismissal/statutory redundancy pay therefore increases from £13,500 to £13,920.The minimum basic award will increase from £5,000 to £5,676.

The above increases will only apply to events that give rise to compensation that occur on or after 6 April 2014.

The following statutory rates have also increased in line with inflation:

  • Guarantee pay (used during periods of layoff and short-time working) will increase from £24.20 to £25 per day.
  • Sick pay will rise from £86.70 to £87.55.
  • Maternity, ordinary and additional paternity and adoption leave will rise from £136.78 to £138.18.

For further information please contact Reina D’costa at reina@bizlawuk.co.uk

Prevention is better than Cure!

www.bizlawuk.co.uk

 

On call business lawyer popularity spree

On call business lawyer popularity spreading to India. Please click the link below to see how examples of our innovative legal services model are now also being adopted in countries as far as India .

http://ow.ly/txQuI

To find out more about how our flexible and experienced consultant solicitors can help your business please contact us : reina@bizlawuk.co.uk or visit our website http://www.bizlawuk.co.uk

Insolvency statistics UK 4th Quarter

Alarming how many businesses can go under without proper risk strategy and regular monitoring of the business . Luckily the figures are coming down .

The Insolvency Service today published the 4th Quarter 2013 Insolvency Statistics

These can be found at: http://www.insolvencydirect.bis.gov.uk/otherinformation/statistics/201402/index.htm

The headline results are as follows:

There were 14,982 company liquidations in 2013 – a decrease of 7.3% compared with 2012 and the lowest level since 2007. Of these, 3,624 were compulsory liquidations (down 14.9% on 2012 and the lowest level since 1981), and 11,358 were creditors’ voluntary liquidations (down 4.5% on 2012 and the lowest level since 2010).
The number of administrations, receiverships and company voluntary arrangements were all lower in 2013 than in 2012.
There were 101,049 individual insolvencies in 2013 – a decrease of 7.9% on 2012 and the lowest level since 2005. Creditor petitions, debtor petitions and debt relief orders all decreased (by 18.8%, 23.9% and 11.7% respectively). The number of individual voluntary arrangements, however, increased by 4.9% compared with 2012, standing at 48,967 in total.

To discuss how you can protect your business from risk of insolvency contact Reina Dcosta , BizLawUK  via reina@bizlawuk.co.uk,  check out our website  http://www.bizlawuk.co.uk , follow us on @bizlawuk and claim your free business risk audit.

Implementation delay on flexible working

Implementation delay on flexible working rights being extended by the Children and Families Bill to all employees who have completed 26 weeks qualifying service as from 6th April 14 as was originally intended.

 

To speak to us about employment rights in the UK please email reina@bizlawuk.co.uk or visit our website to find out more about the services we offer.

Testimonials-Advertising Law

Testimonials must relate to the product advertised and claims in a testimonial that are likely to be interpreted as factual must not mislead or be likely to mislead the consumer (Rules 3.46 and 3.47). Marketers may not use testimonials to circumvent the Code by making claims in a consumer review that they would not otherwise be permitted to make. For example, if a marketer doesn’t hold the evidence to substantiate an efficacy claim, they cannot use a testimonial which makes that claim.

Testimonials alone do not constitute substantiation so marketers should not rely on testimonials as support for any direct or implied claims made in the marketing communication. Although it acknowledged that a testimonial which made implied claims that a topically applied gel could have similar effects to surgery might have been a genuinely held opinion, the ASA held it breached the Code because the marketer did not provide objective evidence to show the product was an effective alternative to surgery (Rodial Ltd, 11 January 2012). Customer survey responses which made positive comments about saving money on energy bills were not considered adequate substantiation for savings claims (Bright Networks Ltd t/a Bright Heating, 9 January 2013).

The ASA upheld complaints against a testimonial which described a individual’s theory regarding “hexagonal water” because it considered consumers would interpret the claims as being in relation to a theory based on evidence, particularly because it appeared to be endorsed by a scientist (Water for Health Ltd, 3 July 2013).

Marketers using a testimonial must hold evidence that it is genuine. This requirement has two elements; i.e. that the quote is from a real person and that it reflects what they said.

Contact :Reina Dcosta at reina@bizlawuk.co.uk to find out more.

Immigration updates for visit visas

The Government intends for the changes to come into effect on 1 October 2013.

Changes to Visit Visa Categories

1. Expansion of the activities a business visitor may undertake in the UK

The Statement sets out new permissible activities that business visitors may undertake in the UK including:

(i) Internal auditors from global corporations may enter the UK as business visitors to undertake short internal audits; and
(ii) Training that a business visitor may undertake is to be expanded to include corporate training for the purposes of the business visitor’s employment overseas. The training must be delivered by a UK company that is not part of the business visitor’s employer’s corporate group. Furthermore, the main activity of that UK company must not be the provision of training.

Changes to Tier 1 of the Points-Based System

Although closed in April 2011, the Tier 1 (General) category remains open for extension and settlement applications. The following changes are proposed to this category:

1. Introduction of “genuine earnings” test to the Tier 1 (General) extension and settlement applications

A “genuine earnings” test is being introduced in response to concerns that Tier 1 (General) is being abused by applicants submitting bogus claims of their earnings, particularly self-employed earnings. The new test gives caseworkers greater scope to test the evidence presented in cases where abuse is suspected.

2. Enabling those who demonstrate exceptional promise in the arts to apply under Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent)

The Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) category is designed for individuals who lead the world in the fields of science, humanities, engineering and the arts, or show exceptional promise in the fields of science, humanities and engineering. Applicants in this category must be endorsed by a Designated Competent Body, and wish to work in the UK. The Arts Council will now also endorse applicants who show exceptional promise in the arts.

Changes to Tier 2 of the Points-Based System

The Statement of Changes proposes the implementation of changes to Tier 2 of the Points-Based System intended to improve flexibility for businesses and migrant employees. These include:

1. Removal of the English language requirement for Tier 2 intra-company transferee migrants

At present, any Tier 2 (ICT) migrant who wishes to extend his or her stay in the UK beyond three years must demonstrate an English language ability that is at least the equivalent of level A1 on the Common European Framework of Reference. As the Tier 2 (ICT) route no longer leads to settlement in the UK, the need for integration is less relevant and therefore, in response to representations from businesses in the UK, the English language requirement for applicants in the Tier 2 (ICT) category extending their stay in the UK beyond three years is to be removed.

2. Removal of share ownership restrictions for senior staff within the Tier 2 (General) immigration category

A deregulatory change will introduce a waiver of the prohibition that Tier 2 (General) migrants must not own more than 10% shares in the Sponsor’s business. The waiver of this rule will apply only to applicants on a salary of £152,100 pa or more.

Changes to the Tier 5 Youth Mobility Scheme

Currently, the countries and territories participating in the Tier 5 Youth Mobility scheme are Australia, Canada, Japan, Monaco, New Zealand, the Republic of Korea and Taiwan. The Statement of Changes proposes that Hong Kong be added to the list of participating countries and territories.

The Statement of Changes also sets out the annual allocation of places for 2014. There is to be an increase of allocations for Australia from 35,000 to 38,500 places, as Australia attracted a higher number of British youth under its reciprocal scheme in 2012 than in the previous year.

Contact reina@bizlawuk.co.uk to see how we can assist with immigration law.