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We regularly advise our clients to have three documents: a Will, a Power of Attorney and an Advance Medical Directive. All three are essential documents for estate planning.

The regulation of medical devices in the UK has recently made headlines again as further criticisms have been levelled against the current system. Several devices, which were considered safe under the regulatory system, have been subject to litigation and controversy in the past few years. Metal on metal hip replacements, mesh implants, Essure contraceptive devices and Nanostim pacemakers have all caused problems for a number of the patients who have received them but have apparently met the required safety standards to be supplied on the market. The list of defective devices has only grown longer over time yet the regulatory system remains flawed. 

The Competition and Markets Authority have found that funeral costs have increased by two-thirds in the last decade – this was approximately three times the rate of inflation.

Work, travel, love, food, life….everything in the world depends on one thing…the health of our planet. Anyone noticed even Glasgow had a heatwave this year? Taps aff was probably a regular hashtag. But enjoying the weather is one thing…what does the continuing change mean for Planet Earth?

Legal loophole – can you force an Executor to resign where they are convicted of murdering the deceased.

Recently we have been in the unfortunate situation of having to advise the family of a murder victim that the person convicted of the murder is appointed to act as the Executor to the victim’s estate. Many other families of murder victims in Scotland have been surprised and shocked to learn that the convicted killer of their loved one can act as the Executor to the estate of their victim. Whilst an Executor can not change the terms of a Will and a convicted murderer can not inherit from their victim’s estate, the Executor does have power to make decisions about the management and distribution of the property of the deceased, depending on the terms of the Will.

A recent English case has warned of the perils of not keeping your Will with your Solicitors Firm as the failure of a family member to locate the Will of a recently deceased woman caused a dispute between the people who were entitled to inherit under the Will and a “belligerent, wholly cavalier and reckless” TV heir hunter who ignored the existence of the Will and tried to take a 40% cut of an estate worth around £630,000.

A Glasgow employment tribunal has this week published a judgement which indicates that the Police Force is operating at minimum safety levels due to financial constraints.  Fiona Mair raised a successful action for indirect sex discrimination after Police Scotland rejected her application for a flexible working pattern which was to allow her to look after her son.  This application was refused as if she moved to another shift it meant there would be an extra officer on shift over and above basic staffing levels.  Ms Mair, who was a long –serving officer, required to resign as a result of being moved to a night shift pattern in 2014.  The employment tribunal judge found that Police Scotland’s refusal was disproportionate as Ms Mair had requested a relatively minor adjustment.

The Scottish Government has recently published its response to the Consultation on the Law of Succession. The Scottish Law Commission previously reviewed the law, and made several recommendations for reform.

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