Number Of Workers Earning Less Than Living Wage On The Rise

Due to figures from think tank only for the last year 20% of the workforce in the UK which is about 4.8m people have claimed they earned below the so-called living wage. This means their number has risen too fast. The Resolution Foundation conducted a research the results of which point out that 25% of women and 15% of men who are employed did not manage to cover their basic needs for living in April 2012. This is the last month the search covered.

Since 2009 the number of employees receiving under the living wage had gone up by 3.4 million.

However, there are many different groups of workers who earn much less than the living wage. The worst results have been accounted for those under the age of 20 who go to work. In 77% of the cases they have received salaries far away from what they had expected. The other risk group is of the people working in restaurants and hotels.

London’s living wage is now £8.55 in London and £7.45 elsewhere.

Matthew Whittaker, report author and senior economist at the Resolution Foundation, said: “For most of the working population real wages have been flat or declining for many years and as a result more and more people have dipped below the level of the living wage.”

He added that all the parties need to think carefully about the proper way which would lead to boost in the rates of pay.In addition may be this should be written into the employment contract.

The answer that came from the government was that they were in fact encouraging all employers to give their workers much more money than the national minimum wage.

The spokesman added:

“Despite being in tough times, this Government is doing absolutely everything it can to help people on low pay with the cost of living.”


HMRC to Miss Tax Credit Fraud Target, says PAC

In 2010 the government challenged HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) to cut fraud and error by £8bn by 2015. The predictions of the Public Accounts Committee point out that the sum will be reduced by £3bn. Can you imagine how many legal documents you can buy with this amount of money?

A new point in the tax credit system proposes that parents returning to work should get financial support.

There will be a complex system taking into account age, income, hours worked, number and age of children, childcare costs and disabilities, which will allow low-income families, apply for tax credits. HMRC has to be aware of the changes in family circumstances.

It turns out that the claimant cannot totally understand the system and HMRC has many problems with its administration.

The results from the latest figures show that one in five awards featured an error or fraud; £1.7bn of these overpayments was written off because claimants did not intend to pay it; in 2010-11- £2.3bn was lost to fraud and error; the 2015 target will be missed by £5bn.

The committee advised HMRC to improve the information it gives to claimants in letters and through its helpline, and also check more carefully the information received back.

This increased the number of checks made by HMRC and respectively the number of appeals after payments were reduced or cancelled.

Many experienced financial hardship due to delays of six to eight months.

A spokesman for HMRC said that extra checks had saved £390m and helped the accurate usage of information.

“We are also getting tougher with claimants about the proof they need to support their claims; for example on childcare costs and on school leavers,” he said.


John Kerry: ‘Assad must go’

When on a visit in London the US secretary of state John Kerry said Bashar al-Assad “must go”.

The answer he got from the Britain’s foreign secretary William Hague was that the UK is about to increase significantly its support for Syria’s opposition.

Mr. Kerry said: “The Assad regime has rained down rockets on the people of Aleppo”.

On Tuesday in Berlin he is going to meet the Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov and Syrian opposition members to whom he said they had better attend the conference in Rome in Thursday if they wanted any results.

He said he was “frustrated” from the number of killed people and the fact that there was a lack of an international political solution.

In the words of Mr. Kerry, Britain and the US opposed to the prospect of Iran obtaining nuclear weapons.

He said: “An Iran with a nuclear weapon is simply unacceptable.”

The spokesman of the prime minister announced that at the meeting between Mr. Cameron and Mr. Kerry the latter did not talk about the possible exit of Britain from the European Union. The topic of their discussion was a free trade agreement between the US and the EU and the possibility of taking the progress forward at the next G8 summit in Northern Ireland in June.

The route of Mr. Kerry includes nine countries as he will stop in Paris, Rome, Ankara, Cairo, Riyadh, Abu Dhabi and Doha.

BBC diplomatic correspondent Bridget Kendall said: “What is clear is that the British government is pretty pleased that the US secretary of state decided that his first port of call on this his first major trip abroad should be Britain, he then goes on to European capitals…and it is in marked contrast with the last secretary of state, Hillary Clinton, who…rather pointedly went to Asia first.”

In spite of the complicated international situation, The Legal Stop will continue to be your reliable partner, enabling you with high quality corporate and business documents.




UKBA Slammed Over Fresh Immigration Backlog

After the discovery of more than 16,000 unresolved immigration applications, the UK Border Agency underwent lots of critics.

The found applications which were not inspected were of people living outside the EEA but who wanted to settle in the UK because of a partner there.

Inspectors said that most of these cases were appropriately dealt with but of course they managed to find some failings.

There are about 14,000 cases in which applications were rejected one time and when people had tried to apply for a second time their applications had not been dealt with at all.

Some cases were called “complex” as they were not being handled as stuff which needed further guidance.

The independent chief inspector of borders and immigration John Vine criticized this, saying:

“The agency should know about its workload. It should prioritise its resources and, at the very least, have a plan to deal with some of the things that we come across in inspection,”

“For people to be in such a backlog of cases is not acceptable and I urge the agency to deal with the cases swiftly. To wait such a long time, even if your case is complex, is completely outside any service standards.”

On the other hand Mark Harper, the immigration minister, defended UKBA claiming the agency had already had too many problems when they had inherited it.

According to him the system was not good enough to deal with such situations in the past but the new policies will change everything.

In our wide range of documents, you will find lots of employment documents, including a variety of employment contracts and policies.



A Consultation on Electoral Reform Was Announced

As the UK law is considered to be fragmented and outdated the Law Commission for England and Wales appointed a meeting on which it will suffer some changes. The voting system for general elections, however, will not be a part of this reform.

In connection with this announcement, this very same Commission published a report, seeking opinions for a number of different learned respondents as for example the Government, public bodies and members of the public.

This meeting is due to be hold in late 2014, and the report announcing its results should be published in summer 2015.

It will cover many different areas of the law related to the rules about the announcement of the results of elections, about technical electoral administration, the methods of voting, and rules on candidates and campaigning.

The law has not been changed in a significant way since 1872 and the recommended changes now will try to modernize it making it simpler and more flexible.

The aspects of the law, which will not be discussed covers the rules on who can vote in elections and the voting systems used. Such changes were debated much but last year a UK-wide referendum was held and the question in matter was whether general elections should continue to use the “first-past-the-post” system.

After the referendum, the Commission decided not to include these areas in the consultation, claiming they would be “best left to democratic or political consensus”.

Different voting methods will be considered at the consultation but new methods as online voting probably will not be mentioned. According to a report from 2010 almost 40% of the internet users in the UK answered they would prefer to vote in the General Election if the option to vote online had been available.

Respondents to the consultant were on the contrary opinion- they insisted on consideration of new voting methods.

“The complexity and sheer scale of the existing framework for electoral law puts at risk the credibility of our electoral process,” said Frances Patterson QC, from the Law Commission. “The price we pay as a democracy when the electoral process loses credibility is high and potentially catastrophic.

“Our consultees have told us, with one voice, that the law is in need of reform.”

While the Government is discussing the new changes, you can take advantage on our corporate legal documents. 

Berkshire Council Sells Olympic Items on eBay

The main idea of The Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead to sell Olympic items on eBay is to raise money for its Mayor’s Benevolent Fund. The auction has more than 300 lots like flags, and many other souvenirs among which two large Wenlock figures could be seen. The starting price of these two figures is £250. Many of the items that were used at the Eton Dorney rowing events are expected to go on sale on Thursday.

The authority’s lead member for the 2012 Games,  Simon Dudley, said: “We have experienced one of the most memorable years in the borough’s history and we now have the happy task of finding good homes for all the items we were provided with to decorate roads, parks and car parks leading up to and during games time.”

He also mentioned that he was sure these items would suit all pockets as there are in fact banners and flags which are still in their original wrappings. According to him people show great deal of interest in the Wenlock mascots so they expected healthy biddings on these items.

Mayor Colin Rayner said: “The benevolent fund was set up many years ago specifically to help alleviate poverty in the borough and this will be a very welcome seasonal boost.”

The money from the auctions will be used to help people in need in the harsh winter times.

The last auction will be on 16 December.

Although at The Legal Stop, we do not sell any Olympic items, we will be glad to provide you with something more useful – great legal document templates for your buisness!

Co-operative The First to Add Family Law to its Offerings

The first consumer brand to add Family Legal Services to its basket is one of the well established market leaders – the Co-operative.

It was recently announced that due to the official launch of the Co-operative family law services, the supermarket brands will enter into the reserved legal services. As stated by the mutual, the customer service charter that will be published premises that there will be ‘no nasty surprises’ on the product fees. Additionally, the charter will also include a jargon-free service, according to which clients will be treated as individuals. This strategy has been used by The Legal Stop, as well in order to make it easier for everyone, when it comes to legal documents online.

Since the changes of Legal Services Act 2007, it was the Co-operative to become the foremost consumer brand to be granted with an alternative structure for its business in April. Christina Blacklaws, Law Society council member for child care and former TV Edwards partner, leads the family law unit. According to latest news, the Co-operative will present a full list of the family law services available. These will include, but are not limited to, child protection, divorce, financial issues and mediation. Additionally, the Co-operative has the license to provide to customers a face-to-face legal help for Westminster. The mutual will also apply for other licenses in the nearer future.

The Legal Services of the Co-operative was set up in 2006 and it is estimated that out of the 500 staff employed, 281 are actually lawyers. A recruitment plan has been introduced in the beginning of June so that the number of staff could increase by 3,000 over the following years.