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From the archives - November 2017

Immigration detention: a case of overuse

Immigration related detention is being used unnecessarily and in inappropriate cases, causing distress and longer term harm to detainees kept in degrading conditions, the authors argue

Sexual harassment: don't suffer in silence

With the scale of sexual harassment in the workplace becoming apparent, this article offers some advice as to how victims should handle it

Child disputes: a quicker way through?

A sheriff's method of resolving an urgent specific issue matter concerning a child prompts this discussion of whether the use of affidavits would be beneficial in child related disputes more generally

Brexit: where are we now and what happens next?

An update from the UK Law Societies' Brussels Office, giving a perspective on the negotiations from the EU side, and what may come next as a result

Reading for pleasure

This month's selection of leisure reading, chosen by the Journal's book review editor

Opinion: Claire McKee

Women are being encouraged to speak out against sexual abuse – if it happens in the profession, do the channels exist for a complaint to be dealt with appropriately?

Book reviews

Review of Principles of Cybercrime (Clough)

Profile

Jim Stephenson joined the Society's Council earlier this year and sits on the Legal Aid Committee

President's column

LGBT+ rights are human rights, and I believe the Society and the profession should speak out more to combat discrimination and promote diversity in order that everyone can reach their potential

ScotLIS: the citizens' tool

Registers of Scotland page: launch of ScotLIS; new regulations to facilitate digital services

People on the move

Collected news of new appointments and practice changes

People matter

The new data protection law, the GDPR, significantly raises the stakes as respects compliance. Solicitors are not exempt, and we report on a Society CPD seminar designed to help them prepare

Historic abuse: the fairness matrix

With the limitation period removed from reparation claims based on childhood abuse, what issues must be addressed regarding a defence of substantial prejudice or that a fair hearing is not possible?

Landmark year in legal IT

This year’s Journal overview of current technology trends predicts that we are indeed beginning to see how IT is enabling innovative legal practices to redesign the whole delivery of legal services

Sentence, but no full stop

When prisoners’ families struggle to cope, one charity is there to provide the necessary support – but it helps if families know about it from the outset

Opening up arbitration

Arbitration remains a male-dominated world, but the pressure is on to change that. We report on a seminar that focused on opportunity in the sector

Making the agent pay

Latest civil cases, including expenses against a solicitor; other expenses decisions; recovery of possession; family actions; appeals; adults with incapacity

Equal pay: beware the mass claims

Employment briefing: the Asda equal pay case could be an indication of things to come for large private employers. What steps can they take to guard against similar claims?

Dealing with conflict

Incapacity briefing: an Inner House decision has clarified a disputed point of practice over the procedure where an applicant for guardianship is in competition with a local authority

Claims outside the rules

Human rights briefing: human rights claims outwith the Immigration Rules must be considered separately and with regard to all the factors related to the case, the Inner House has determined

Pension transfers – history repeating itself?

Pensions briefing: inadequate advice for scheme members looking to transfer from defined benefit schemes is now causing significant concern, as is the continuing and growing prevalence of scams

Last instructions

Executries briefing: a 2014 case has left the law in a state of uncertainty over who has the final say as to the disposal of a body; clear instructions in a will would resolve the issue

Scottish Solicitors' Discipline Tribunal

Report relating to Michael Thomas McSherry

Standard missives: an unachievable dream?

In the second part of her article on the utility of standard missives, the author offers her own list of practical suggestions to improve the house transaction process for solicitors and clients alike

SOLAR powered

In-house interview: the President of SOLAR, the Society of Local Authority Lawyers and Administrators, tells how SOLAR has developed, and of his senior role at West Dunbartonshire Council

Disability rights

An IBA report calls for stronger action by lawyers and governments to help protect the rights of people with disabilities

Law reform roundup

Recent public policy work of the Society's committees, including pre-recorded evidence; Universal Service Obligation for broadband; financial regulation and supervision; breach of contract

Too hard a drive?

The Word of Gold: a new survey finds that timidity towards technology is keeping firms in the slow lane

Settlement: can you avoid cheques?

This update from Professional Practice on the new cheque clearing system highlights issues that may arise in the settlement of property transactions

Q & A corner

From the Professional Practice team: an update on letters of obligation; and acting in a transaction between cousins

When 25 is the new 35

Some law firms really are practising innovative ways to get more from staff while reducing working hours. One is Glasgow's Conveyancing Direct: what has been achieved to date?

Sorry; not sorry

Apology v admission... where do we draw the line? The authors explore how far it is safe to go under the Apologies (Scotland) Act 2016 in relation to complaints and claims

Ask Ash

Advice column: should I drop hints to a colleague whom I know to be facing the axe?

Plan sets ambitious 2017-18 targets

Innovative use of IT underpins many of the 30 projects set out in the Law Society of Scotland’s annual plan for the 2017-18 practice year

Letting agents: prepare to register

It is time for letting agent businesses to prepare for the new registration and training requirements coming into force next year

Paralegal pointers

A festive invitation, and a chance to feed back to Registers of Scotland

A way to make an impact

In association with Altis: the Altis conveyancing platform has the potential to ease client concerns over the property transfer process, as well as increasing business efficiency