This will be the place to find all breaking news and updates from Thompsons and personal injury litigation in general.
For those of our client’s involved in Fatal Accident Inquiries (FAIs) the one thing that comes up again, and again, is the time it takes for the case to get to Court.To start with an example, we were involved in an FAI in early 2019 relating to a death from 2014. That is almost 5 years for the case to be heard before a Court. That is 5 years where a family may be without answers about how and why their loved one died, 5 years without real clarity on the circumstances around the death. 5 years for staff involved in a death, through the course of their employment, of worry and anguish as to whether they did all they could to prevent the death. 5 years for memories to fade, evidence to be less reliable and people involved to have moved on and be more difficult to trace.
In the first case of its kind, a victim of sexual assault has been awarded £35,000 in compensation for the inhumane treatment she received when in the witness box. Lord Carloway condemned the behaviour of solicitor Andy Aitken and refusal to intervene from Sheriff Hammond as a ‘serious failure in the administration of justice.’ Shannon brought a case against the Lord Advocate after seeking legal advice and being told that a previous case at the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) found that judges must ensure victims of sexual crimes are protected during proceedings.
As the political parties return to the campaign trail, we at Thompsons are launching our 2021 Scottish Parliament Election manifesto.As Scotland’s leading firm of Solicitors dedicated to representing trades union members, victims of workplace injury and mistreatment and survivors of historical sexual abuse we have first-hand experience of the deficiencies in our current laws. We see daily the extent to which the law currently fails to fairly balance the relationship between employer and employee, between victims of accidents and insurers and between the individual and the state.
The review group, tasked with improving the Scottish Criminal Justice System for the management of sexual offence cases, have now published their findings and recommendations on 18th March 2021.i The focus was to improve the system for the complainers and the vulnerable witnesses, without compromising any of the rights of the accused.
This is world autism awareness week and is understandably a great time to learn a little about autism. Autism is a neurodevelopmental condition. It is a disability and it affects how people experience the world through their senses but also how their brains process that information and how they communicate. The thing about autism is that how it presents is vastly different dependant on the individual and the impact it has on both their life and the lives of their family can be hugely different. This is where you might have heard of the phrase ‘the spectrum’ before. The ‘spectrum’ is best thought of these days as about different support needs: so at one end of the spectrum you might need considerable support and be unable to communicate or process information and require 24 hour support compared to those that appear to require very little support in their day to day lives.
On Monday of this week the findings of an extensive independent review were published which highlighted significant failings in infection prevention and control, governance and risk management at the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital. The review was carried out by a panel of independent external experts led by Professor Mike Stevens. The review was commissioned by the Scottish Government as part of a wider investigation into the ventilation system, water supply and drainage system at the hospital.
TV personality Holly Willoughby has recently been in the news regarding potential litigious action being taken against her by her former talent agent, YMU. The dispute relates to contracts which were brokered by YMU, who are due an annual commission as part of their agency agreement. Ms Willoughby has since left YMU and has set up her own management company, called Roxy Management. Roxy are unique in that they only employ woman. Her former agents will argue that they are entitled to continue to collect this annual commission from her, despite there no longer being an agent-client relationship. They rely on a clause within their contractual agreement with Ms Willoughby typically referred to as a ‘sunset clause’, otherwise known as a post-term commission clause. This is agreed on the basis that they initially secured the deal and are entitled to collect commission on said deal, usually for a finite amount of time.
The Hate Crime and Public Order (Scotland) Bill was passed by the Scottish Parliament last week. Yet, 32 MSPs voted against the Bill, with criticisms levelled at both what the legislation does and doesn’t do. With the creation of a new criminal offence as well as extending the possible aggravations to existing offences, the passing of the bill is a significant development. But what effect does it have?