Legislation / Legal

HSE:  More health & safety prosecutions will take place before Inquest as changes to a key agreement between those who investigate & prosecute work-related deaths seek to speed up justice in England & Wales.  The revised protocol will allow prosecution before Inquest where manslaughter or homicide charges are not relevant – if it is considered appropriate and in the interest of justice.

The changes to the Work-Related Deaths Protocol (WRDP), which took effect on 1 October 2011, should mean that bereaved families see a swifter resolution to some prosecutions. They are being announced by the Work Related Deaths National Liaison Committee (NLC) and are supported by the Coroners’ Society.

 Press release & links

EHRC:  The Equality and Human Rights Commission announced last week that it has submitted its intervention to the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) on 4 cases relating to alleged religious discrimination in the workplace

Press release & links

DCMS:  The Government has launched an assault on the unnecessary regulation that holds the hospitality industry back.  Plans to scrap or simplify more than 60 regulations, freeing the public & businesses from overly burdensome, bureaucratic or completely redundant rules have been announced by Tourism Minister, John Penrose.  

Press release & links

OFT:  People may be paying too much for mobility aids such as mobility scooters & stair-lifts, and the elderly & disabled can experience high pressure & misleading sales practices when buying this equipment at home, the OFT has warned. 

The OFT found there can be a wide disparity in the price of identical products, for example the price of one brand & model of scooter varied by £3,000. Around half of trader websites & advertising material that were checked did not quote any prices.

The OFT has also launched a national consumer awareness campaign providing consumers with practical tips and informing them of their rights when buying mobility aids on the doorstep.

Press release & links

BIS:   A new law came into force last week that will give SMEs easier access to justice to protect their copyright & trade marks. The Patents County Court (Financial Limits) Order (No.2) 2011 creates a clearer definition of which disputes involving copyright & trade mark claims should be heard in the Patents County Court (PCC) and which ones should go to the High Court.

Press release & links

 

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