This will be the place to find all breaking news and updates from Thompsons and personal injury litigation in general.
Over the past year, we have all experienced changes to the way we live our lives, both personally and professionally. One of the biggest changes for most has been adapting to working from home, juggling home schooling and finding a quiet workspace. In addition to the various zoom calls throughout the week, lawyers have also had to adjust to conducting court hearings from home.
A fire at the luxury Cameron House Hotel and Spa in December 2017 led to the death of two men, Richard Dyson and Simon Midgley, who were guests at the hotel at the time of the blaze. The source of the blaze was identified as having started due to a night porter placing a bag of ashes from a fire into a cupboard containing kindling and newspapers.
The pandemic has brought the industrial relations practice of “Fire and Rehire” into sharp relief. Already outlawed in several European states and according to the Fair Work Convention contrary to the Fair Work Principles endorsed by the Scottish Government, the Scottish Courts have recently upheld a legal challenge against the highly controversial practice.
The Covid pandemic has seen an abrupt halt to the criminal justice system. The UK has tried, in many ways, to be creative in their approach towards how best to get criminal trials moving, but unfortunately it falls short of justice in a number of ways. In January 2021, there were 54,000 unheard Crown Court cases in England and the number of criminal trials held in Scotland dropped by 75%.
Over the last few weeks, the #MeToo movement has once again become prominent. Notably, the reports have come from the sports world with Olympians sharing their experiences, along with allegations against musician, Marilyn Manson.Since it began in 2017, the #MeToo Movement has effected real change. It has the power to change both the civil and criminal courts as we know it across the world, as it changes our understanding of collective evidence.
As we approach a year since the Covid-19 outbreak was declared a pandemic, the rollout of vaccines is largely being celebrated as a way out of repeated lockdowns. But while uptake is currently high and many have indicated they would queue through the night for the jag, the Government has been clear that vaccination will not be mandatory. Such a decision is likely the correct one from a legal perspective, given that a blanket rule that all citizens must receive a vaccine would raise serious questions relating to consent and disproportionate interference with fundamental rights.
Recent developments have seen UK based Security Firm G4S accused of taking fees from workers in exchange for securing roles within their Middle East operations1. The practice, which is said to operate via recruitment agencies targeting migrant workers in the region, has been described as reaching into the millions in fees paid. The conduct described of course amounts to modern slavery. G4S have stated previously that “Any human rights abuse is completely unacceptable and will not be tolerated under any circumstances… G4S is committed to the highest standards to ensure that migrant workers are treated with respect and dignity. We are working to raise global standards across the industry with all our partners.”2
The UK left the European Union on the 31st December 2020 creating an even more uncertain future ahead while we are still on the road to recovery from the pandemic.The pandemic highlighted the need to have strong employment rights in the UK and while in the European Union we benefitted from legislation such as the Working Time Directive, the future of employment rights in a post-Brexit Britain are now uncertain.