Glasgow: 0141 221 5562 Edinburgh: 0131 220 7660

Energy Efficiency Regulations to Come Into Force - Update

Energy Efficiency Regulations to Come Into Force - Update

The Scottish Government has published a parliamentary report in connection with the forthcoming Energy Efficiency (Domestic Private Rented Property) (Scotland) Regulations 2019.

Our earlier blog stated that the Regulations were proposed to come into force on 1 April 2020. However the report confirms this will be postponed until 1 October 2020.

What are the new key dates? From 1 October 2020 any new tenancies will require to have a minimum EPC rating of E.

On 31 March 2022 this requirement will extend to existing

Coronavirus and Powers of Attorney

Coronavirus and Powers of Attorney

Now more than ever, we should be asking the question: “are my affairs in order?”

In these uncertain times, it is prudent planning to consider putting a Will and Power of Attorney in place. A Will, of course, allows you to state what you wish to happen to your assets upon your death and provides your family with some comfort in knowing your affairs will be in order upon your death. A Power of Attorney, on the other hand, allows you to appoint someone to

Coronavirus - landlord and letting agent update

Coronavirus - landlord and letting agent update

Following on from our blog on Monday regarding the Coronavirus and its impact on the private rented sector, it is abundantly clear that the pandemic is causing unprecedented worry to both landlords, letting agents and tenants.

There appears to be a lot of speculation and panic about what the government will do to help tenants.  We at TC young will continue to blog and provide informed updates at this difficult time with a view to putting an end to some of the worrisome speculation.

Below

Life as a Modern Apprentice - A first step into my professional career

Life as a Modern Apprentice - A first step into my professional career

All throughout my high school years I was asked what I wanted to do when I left, my answer was always “I’ll just go to college or university.” I left high school still undecided in what I was to do. Looking for work is always a daunting process, and I had no idea that modern apprenticeships even existed. After hours of internet research I came across the modern apprenticeship scheme. I signed up and instantly received notifications about potential interviews.

Transitioning from seeing my

Coronavirus - Guidance for Landlords and Letting Agents

Coronavirus - Guidance for Landlords and Letting Agents

Each day our news feed is filled with updates and reports regarding the spread of the coronavirus.   Guidance from the UK Government is to stay at home for 7 days if you have a high temperature and a new continuous cough.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance/stay-at-home-guidance-for-people-with-confirmed-or-possible-coronavirus-covid-19-infection

What can landlords and letting agents do if tenants are self-isolating?

The key here is to ensure you open effective lines of communication.  Landlords and agents should ccommunicate with tenants to let them know what they can expect from their landlords/letting agents during

Streamlined Ground 2 Evictions — An Update!

Streamlined Ground 2 Evictions — An Update!

On 1st May 2019, the Housing (Scotland) Act 2001 was amended to provide Registered Social Landlords (RSLs) with a mandatory ground of eviction where a tenant is criminally convicted. However, almost one year later, there remains a cloud of judicial uncertainty surrounding these cases.

Section 16(2)(aa) of the 2001 Act establishes what is effectively a two-part test for RSLs to have a “mandatory” ground for eviction:

  • That a tenant, joint tenant, subtenant, or a person residing, lodging or visiting the property, is convicted of

Climate Change Act — How Does This Affect RSLs?

Climate Change Act — How Does This Affect RSLs?

Freedom of Information (FOI) applied to RSLs as of 11th November 2019 — but did you know that the Climate Change (Scotland) Act 2009 now also applies?

As you will be aware, RSLs are now defined as a Scottish public authority under the new FOI provisions. As the Climate Change (Scotland) Act 2009 applies to a Scottish public authority by way of the definition in the FOI Act of 2002, RSLs will now fall under the scope of the Climate Change Act. The Act

The Private Residential Tenancy: Notice to Leave Dates

The Private Residential Tenancy: Notice to Leave Dates

The First-tier Tribunal recently considered the date to be stated in a notice to leave on or after which the landlord can expect to make an application to the Tribunal for eviction.

By way of background, where a landlord wishes to recover possession of a Private Residential Tenancy, the landlord must serve a notice to leave. The legislation sets out various requirements for the notice to leave. One of the requirements is that the notice to leave states a date on or after which the

Property Damage: The Importance of Evidence

Property Damage: The Importance of Evidence

The recent First-tier Tribunal (Housing and Property Chamber) decision of Ritchie v Finlayson highlights the importance of providing sufficient evidence when making a claim against tenants for damage to the let property and contents.

When a tenant vacates a property there may be times when the property is not left in the same condition as it was at commencement of the tenancy. This could be a result of wear and tear or it could be as a result of failure on the part of the

'Notifiable Events' Requirement for Charities

'Notifiable Events' Requirement for Charities

Charities may be aware that Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR) are asking all charities to report Notifiable Events. Whilst there is no legal requirement to report an event, OSCR are keen to encourage charities to report to them when there has been a significant event which may or may not have a negative impact on an individual charity or the wider charity sector.

Types of notifiable events can be as follows:-

  • Fraud and theft
  • Significant financial loss
  • Incidents of abuse or mistreatment of

Parent Company Guarantees v Performance Bonds - What option is best for you?

Parent Company Guarantees v Performance Bonds - What option is best for you?

In the current economic climate, contractor default is even more prevalent in the construction and engineering industries. Therefore, Registered Social Landlords (RSLs) should always look to protect their position when entering into construction contracts by taking active steps to guard against the risk of potential insolvency of contractors.

This is usually done by the contractor entering into a parent company guarantee or a performance bond which acts as security for losses sustained by the developer should the contractor fail to perform its obligations under

New Public Procurement Thresholds 2020/2021

New Public Procurement Thresholds 2020/2021

The European Commission has released its updated public procurement thresholds that applies to Registered Social Landlords (RSLs) from 1?January 2020. Every two years, the European Commission updates the financial thresholds at which the EU Directives apply.

The Public Contracts (Scotland) Regulations 2015 set out specific procedures for awarding contracts in excess of the threshold values. Generally, when the value of a contract exceeds the thresholds (see below), it is a mandatory requirement that you publish a notice in the Official Journal of the European Union

Abandonment Proceedings

Abandonment Proceedings

The Housing (Scotland) Act 2001 (2001 Act) allows the landlord of a Scottish Secure Tenancy to recover an abandoned property without the need for court proceedings. Section 17, 18 and 19 of the 2001 Act deal with this procedure.

The procedure can only be applied where the landlord has reasonable grounds for believing that:

  • the house is unoccupied; and
  • the tenant does not intend to occupy it.

To ascertain if this is the position the Housing Association should carry out diligent inquiries and retain a

Finding A Traineeship: A (Brief) A-Z From A Trainees Perspective

Finding A Traineeship: A (Brief) A-Z From A Trainees Perspective

You have studied hard, attained your law degree and you are finally ready to be a Trainee Solicitor. Now, all that is left to do is to find a traineeship! But, how exactly do you do that?

Importantly, the answer to this is not the same for everyone. For some, the answer is more straightforward than others. They may have always have dreamt of being a high-flying Commercial Solicitor and know that this is what they intend to pursue. For others, they may fancy themselves

Can a Landlord Serve a Notice to Leave in Anticipation of Arrears?

Can a Landlord Serve a Notice to Leave in Anticipation of Arrears?

The Private Residential Tenancy regime provides that ?it is an eviction ground that the tenant has been in rent arrears for three or more consecutive months? (Ground 12 of Schedule 3 of the Private Housing (Tenancies) (Scotland) Act 2016).

There appears to have been a perception that a landlord could serve a Notice to Leave relying on this ground as soon as a tenant entered into arrears. The landlord would then delay raising proceedings until such time as three consecutive months of arrears had accrued.

Election 2019: Implications for Employment Law

Election 2019: Implications for Employment Law

As we wake up this morning we are presented with the seismic shift in the landscape of UK politics with the Conservatives taking control of the House of Commons with a landslide victory. Whilst the reality of what lies ahead in the next 5 years remains to be seen, there will of course be an impact on employment law as a result of this election.

In their manifesto, the Conservatives proposed to create a single enforcement body for employment rights to enforce employment law

I'm Appointed As An Executor - What Are My Responsibilities?

I'm Appointed As An Executor - What Are My Responsibilities?

Choosing who you wish to implement the terms of your Will can be a difficult decision. After all, this is the person you will trust to ensure that your estate is administered according to your wishes. An executor is a person who is appointed by someone who is making a Will (also known as the testator) to carry out their instructions as set out in their Will.

If you have been appointed as an executor, several considerations should be borne in mind. Firstly, as an

Letters of Wishes

Letters of Wishes

You have made a Will. Congratulations! This now means all of your affairs are in order, your Will can be easily interpreted upon your death and your family will understand your reasons for what you have chosen to include in your Will. Well, not necessarily. It can, at times, be difficult to understand someone?s Will after their death and it may be that a Letter of Wishes can clarify matters.

What is a Letter of Wishes?

A Letter of Wishes is as it says: a

Thinking of a care accommodation move for yourself or a family member?

Thinking of a care accommodation move for yourself or a family member?

There can be many reasons for someone requiring a move to a care home from being less able to do the things you used to do, recurring falls or starting to feel lonely. Care homes have trained staff on hand, which may help to remove risks you may face at home. It is perfectly normal to have conflicted feelings about a care home move for yourself or a family member. So what are the things you should think about before moving into care accommodation?

Different

You own a business? Make a Will!

You own a business? Make a Will!

For many, the prospect of making a Will to adequately provide for their family can seem a rather daunting task. However, when you are a business owner, the number of issues to be considered increases. With that in mind, why should business owners make a Will? Is it really that important?

Planning for the future

Succession planning is often at the forefront of a business owner?s mind to ensure that the business can carry on when they are no longer here. A Will should be

Repayment Charges for Registered Social Landlords

Repayment Charges for Registered Social Landlords

When proprietors within a tenement instruct a repair by dint of a Scheme Decision made in terms of the Tenement Management Scheme (Schedule 1 to the Tenement (Scotland) Act 2004) any owner in such a tenement can, if they wish, arrange for the repair and then look to the other owners for a contribution to the cost.

In mixed tenure tenements where there are privately owned flats and units let in terms of affordable tenancies (social tenancies) a social landlord might find themselves in such

Modern Apprentice Opportunities

Modern Apprentice Opportunities

At TC Young, we offer modern apprentice opportunities in all of our offices. We have worked with school leavers for a number of years (before it was called a modern apprenticeship) and it is a recruitment method that we feel offers excellent training for school leavers. It is also a relationship that we continue to benefit from with individuals receiving training in different areas of the business.

A long time ago ?? we had a plan:

  1. To recruit a legal secretary; however we struggled to

Funeral Expenses Payment in Scotland

Funeral Expenses Payment in Scotland

Today sees the introduction of a new Social Security Scotland benefit to assist those on low incomes to meet the costs of a funeral. ?The payment, known as Funeral Expenses Payment, can help pay for some of the costs of the funeral (burial/cremation fees, travel to arrange or attend funeral, death certificate & other documents). Up to ?700 is available for other funeral expenses (e.g. flowers, coffin or funeral director?s fees).

The payment will not usually cover all of the costs of the funeral. The

What is a Home Report?

What is a Home Report?

Home Reports provide buyers, solicitors and mortgage lenders with a clear market valuation of residential property on the open market for sale and give detailed information on the condition of the property.

The onus is now with the seller of a property in Scotland, who wishes to sell their residential property on the open market, to provide a home report to any potential buyers. Failure to do so could result in you being fined up to ?500.

A Home Report comprises three separate reports these

Changes to Inheritance Tax?

Changes to Inheritance Tax?

The Office of Tax Simplification (OTS) has made some recommendations and proposals to make changes to Inheritance Tax. Whilst these proposals may look good on the surface, do they actually lead to the elimination of some useful tax breaks such as taper relief?

Timescales

A welcome proposal made by the OTS is the reduction of the seven-year gifting rule to five years. This would see individuals being able to make gifts to their children and only have to survive five years for it to

Government Launches Consultation on Sexual Harassment in the Workplace

Government Launches Consultation on Sexual Harassment in the Workplace

The government has just launched a consultation on how to tackle sexual harassment in the workplace. The consultation seeks views on how employers can be encouraged to better prioritise the prevention of sexual harassment.

Consideration is being given to a new duty to require employers to actively protect staff from harassment in the workplace. This would enhance current requirements by placing a preventative duty on employers to take action, for example, implementing an equality policy, raising awareness, providing training and dealing effectively with complaints.

The

Housing Regulations for Veterans

Housing Regulations for Veterans

The Private Housing (Tenancies) (Scotland) Act 2016 (Modification of Schedule 1) Regulations 2019

On 1st July 2019 the above regulations will come into force. These regulations modify the provisions of the 2016 Act whereby residential tenancies granted by charities to provide housing for veterans or temporary accommodation to care leavers cannot be classed as Private Residential Tenancies. This means that such tenancies will sit outside of the statutory regime.

The new regulations do not have retrospective effect. This means that tenancies granted by these organisations

Failsafe Beneficiary - Future Proofing Your Will

Failsafe Beneficiary - Future Proofing Your Will

We're all going on a summer holiday??

It's that time of year again. Sun, sea and sand... it?s holiday time.

Multi-generational travel has increased markedly over the past few years. No longer is it simply mum, dad and the children jetting off abroad, it is now mum, dad, the grandparents, the grandchildren etc. Whilst family time on those long summer days is on everyone's mind, it is also important to consider what if something happened to all of us? Do I need a failsafe beneficiary?

To Cremate or Compost? - Your Will and Funeral Instructions

To Cremate or Compost? - Your Will and Funeral Instructions

Deciding upon what you wish to happen to your body when you die is never an easy thought. What would your family want? Should you be buried? But along with that can often come additional expenditure on top of funeral costs, including purchasing a lair etc. Or should you be cremated and have your ashes scattered in that special place?

Well, now there may be no need to decide between the two if the latest decision emerging from Washington, USA is anything to go by.

The Importance of Reviewing Your Will

The Importance of Reviewing Your Will

If you have a Will in place, it is important to review this on a regular basis to ensure it is up to date with your personal and financial circumstances.

People often think of reviewing matters such as the amount of money to be left to nieces or nephews or who should, in fact, inherit the family heirlooms. However, most don?t think to review who they have appointed as their Executor in their Will. So why is this important?

What is an Executor?

An

Brain Injury Awareness Week

Brain Injury Awareness Week

Brain Injury Awareness Week 2019 is here - #ActionForBrainInjuryWeek #ABIWeek, culminating with #HatsForHeadway on Friday 24th May.

As is often the case, family members can face numerous difficulties as the result of a loved one succumbing to a brain injury - if they no longer have capacity to make decisions for themselves and if the family is not aware of what steps they need to take. Difficulties can arise in relation to medical or financial decisions that need to be made and no-one having

Tribunal to Determine Whether Veganism Should Receive the Same Legal Protection as Religion

Tribunal to Determine Whether Veganism Should Receive the Same Legal Protection as Religion

It is fairly well known that the Equality Act 2010 affords protection against discrimination, harassment and victimisation on the basis of religion (or religious beliefs).

Perhaps less well known is that it can also provide protection in relation to certain philosophical beliefs.

To be protected such philosophical beliefs must be more than an opinion or viewpoint ? it must be a genuinely held belief in relation to weighty and substantial part of human life and behaviour. It must also be serious and important, and have

Dying Matters Awareness Week

Dying Matters Awareness Week

No-one likes to contemplate their own death or think of the death of a loved one. It is however an important topic of conversation to have with your family and friends and is encouraged as part of the Dying Matters Awareness Week. Doing this at an early stage allows you to have an unpressured conversation at a time that suits you and not at a time of ill health or crisis.

Conversations of this nature are a prompt to discuss your affairs and the

Care Home Fees - Deferred Payment Schemes

Care Home Fees - Deferred Payment Schemes

Since 2002 deferred payment schemes have been available for care home residents however, many are unaware of their availability.

Care home residents who have insufficient income and capital (excluding the value of their property) to meet care home fees may enter into an agreement with their local authority to defer payment of part of their contribution towards care costs. They can settle these sums with the local authority at a later date when their home is eventually sold. A deferred payment agreement is an agreement

The Search For A Trainee - a view from the other side

The Search For A Trainee - a view from the other side

Trainee recruitment is a part of my job I really enjoy. I love meeting new people and trying to find someone that I think will bring an extra dimension, while assessing whether they will work well alongside the existing team.

Our latest search for a trainee produced nearly 100 applicants. But of that 100, how do we whittle them down?

First of all we decide what our key criteria will be. That will vary each year depending on the priorities we place on certain skills,

Scotland Introduces Free Personal Care For Under-65s

Scotland Introduces Free Personal Care For Under-65s

In September 2001, the Scottish Government introduced legislation to provide free personal care for those who were assessed as requiring it and were over 65. ?Personal care? means care which relates to day to day tasks and the needs of the person cared for (for example, washing, eating etc.).

1st April 2019 sees the introduction of ?Frank?s Law?, which will broaden the availability of free personal care to those under 65. This means that those living with early onset dementia, Parkinson?s Disease,

Changing Your Name on Your Title Deeds Following Gender Reassignment

Changing Your Name on Your Title Deeds Following Gender Reassignment

If you have undergone gender reassignment surgery, you will be dealing with an overwhelming number of changes and will be starting to create your new identity. To make things easier, the Registers of Scotland (ROS) will change your title deeds to reflect your new identity. They will not only change your name as owner, they will also change your name as borrower in respect of any securities registered over your title. Please note however you will also have to inform your security lender of the

Business Development Mistakes

Business Development Mistakes

?It?s in the diary.? ?Let?s catch up over coffee.? These are typical phrases which are uttered when we hear the words - ?business development.? What are we really looking to gain from having countless lunches and coffees with contacts we may not have seen or heard from in a while?

The purpose

In these uncertain times, businesses can no longer afford to cherry pick where their business comes from. Work may be referred continuously from one reliable source or may come from the man in

Your Rights as a Carer in Scotland

Your Rights as a Carer in Scotland

There are many people who are providing care for loved ones in their own homes.? The Scottish Government recently circulated an updated Carers' charter explaining the rights of adult carers or young carers in Scotland.? This came on the back of the introduction of new legislation, The Carers (Scotland) Act 2016, which came into effect from 1 April 2018.? What are your rights as a carer in Scotland?

The legislation was introduced to enhance the rights of carers in Scotland to help improve their

Brexit what are the employment implications for businesses?

Brexit what are the employment implications for businesses?

As we approach 29 March there are changing levels of uncertainty around what might happen when the UK leaves the European Union, it is a good time to consider what options your business might have to take ahead of a possible Brexit.

The current position is that at 11pm on 29 March 2019 the United Kingdom will leave the E.U. This is known as the ?withdrawal date?. A European court has ruled that the UK can decide to halt the process and stay in the

Age Discrimination - a timely reminder of this issue

Age Discrimination - a timely reminder of this issue

Earlier this month, Acas issued guidance on age discrimination and information for workplaces outlining important points for businesses to consider including steps to take to avoid age discrimination in the workplace and examples of how age discrimination might occur.

Age is one of the nine protected characteristics within the Equality Act 2010. This means that an employee is protected against discrimination because of age. It is important to remember that this discrimination doesn't only occur when a 'young person' receives better treatment than an 'older

First-time buyers consider Lifetime ISA for free cash

First-time buyers consider Lifetime ISA for free cash

As most people are aware, the government set up a very generous scheme at the end of 2015 known as Help to Buy ISAs where young people who had never owned a house before (first-time buyers) could save for a house and be given a free 25% bonus on top of their savings when they became able to purchase of a property. A Lifetime ISA, or ?LISA? as they?re regularly referred to, offers a very similar deal but with considerable differences which you should

Equity Release Mortgages

Equity Release Mortgages

Why consider an equity release mortgage?

The average person can expect to live for around 20 years following retirement and for many people equity release is an attractive option as it offers either a lump sum or a regular income which could be used in a number of ways:

  • To supplement your pension
  • To pass on money to your family while you are still alive
  • To go on a once-in-a-lifetime holiday or trip
  • To redecorate or renovate your home
  • To pay off a loan, clear

Legal Rights

Legal Rights

?But I?ve not spoken to my children in 10 years!???Whether or not you choose to make a Will, there exists what are known as ?Legal Rights? in Scotland. Some argue that if they have chosen to make a Will and expressed a clear wish that their children are not to inherit any of their estate, then why should their children, who they, perhaps, have not seen nor spoken to for many years, be able to lay any claim against their estate? The theory behind these

HR Resolutions for 2019

HR Resolutions for 2019

Before we all down tools for Christmas, it might be an idea to think about what sort of ?resolutions? you wish to make for your business in the coming year. Sometimes, the personnel issues are the ones that go to the bottom of a to-do list so now is a good time to think of what you are looking to achieve.

  1. Ensure your contracts and policies are up-to-date

One area that tends to go to the bottom of a to-do list is contracts and policies.

Fair Work Charter for Severe Weather

Fair Work Charter for Severe Weather

The Scottish Government and the Scottish Trades Union Congress (STUC) have jointly created A Fair Work Charter for Severe Weather, setting out guidelines for both employers and workers for managing the effects of severe weather on work. The Charter was developed as a response to the severe weather brought in by the ?Beast from the East? at the beginning of 2018 which had an impact on commuters and those with caring responsibilities.

The Charter is an extension of the 2016 Fair Work Framework which

Mental Health in the Workplace

Mental Health in the Workplace

Last week was National Stress Awareness Day, and is a good way to remind employers they should be ensuring the welfare of their employees, in particular their stress levels and overall mental health. Employers have a legal and moral obligation to ensure they aren?t discriminating against staff, specifically because of their mental health. Reasonable adjustments, by altering working conditions, to help employees with a disability, including mental health problems is the law.

While many organisations understand the impact of mental health in the workplace, it

Autumn 2018 Budget - key employment announcements

Autumn 2018 Budget - key employment announcements

On 29 October 2018, the Chancellor, Philip Hammond, delivered the Autumn 2018 Budget. The Budget included the following measures of interest to employment practitioners:

  • Following the recommendations of the Low Pay Commission, the government will increase the national minimum wage from April 2019 to the following rates:
    • Apprentices: ?3.90 an hour;
    • 16-17 year olds: ?4.35 an hour;
    • 18-20 year olds: ?6.15 an hour;
    • 21-24 year olds: ?7.70 an hour;
    • National living wage (workers aged 25 and over): ?8.21 an hour.
  • The government will meet its

Acas Early Conciliation - Increase From Previous Year

Acas Early Conciliation - Increase From Previous Year

The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (Acas) has published statistics on its early conciliation (EC) service for the period April to June 2018. The statistics show that the total number of EC notifications had increased by 53% as compared to the equivalent quarter of 2017.?The figures also show an increase in the proportion of EC cases which thereafter proceeded to a full employment tribunal claim: 23% of EC cases went forward compared to only 17% in the same quarter for 2017.

Acas early conciliation is

ONS Reclassification of Registered Social Landlords as Private Bodies

ONS Reclassification of Registered Social Landlords as Private Bodies

Background

In September 2016 the Office of National Statistics (ONS) announced that it was reclassifying Registered Social Landlords (RSLs) in Scotland as public non-financial bodies for the purposes of the national accounts. This was due to RSLs being subject to public sector control via the Scottish Housing Regulator?s (SHR) powers over management, constitutional change and disposals of land. As a consequence of this reclassification, RSL debt would have to be counted as a public liability for the purposes of the nation?s accounts. The ONS was