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From the archives - January 2018

Valuing loss of society: an elusive consistency

Has the level of awards for the wrongful death of a family member become more consistent, or are the complexities increasing? This article surveys recent cases

Child maintenance: yet another DWP effort

A new DWP consultation, with an early response date, sets out plans for revised calculation and better collection in current cases, but writing off of many old debts

Trading futures

An outline of the Trade Bill, part of the Brexit legislative framework, which also contains some of the controversial features of the main EU (Withdrawal) Bill

Appeals and extracts: sticking to the rules

A civil practice casenote on the importance of the procedure rules of court and the rules surrounding an appeal against an extract decree

Making the law work better

The fuller version of the article by the convener of the Society's Public Policy Committee on the work of the committee in its first year

Reading for pleasure

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

Opinion: Trish McLellan

There have been welcome improvements among employers across the legal community in providing mental health and wellbeing support for employees, but there is still some way to go

Book reviews

Review of Online Law for Journalists (Thom)


Debbie Wilson is a sole practitioner at Wilson Defence and has been Council member for Aberdeen, Banff, Peterhead and Stonehaven since May 2017

President's column

From First World War propaganda to modern-day fake news, too much presentation of information goes against our legal training. But we can use social media to spread good news

2018: keep up the momentum

Registers of Scotland page: programme of service improvements will continue in 2018

People on the move

Collected news of new appointments and practice changes

"One lifetime is not enough"

Having retired from the University of Edinburgh, George Gretton tells of his passion for the law, his belief in the Scottish system and his admiration for those who work with real-life legal problems

Legally habit-forming

Have you kept up that new year’s resolution? How do you acquire the mindset that enables you to persevere with changing the way you do things? Our author shares some lessons from experience

Equality in service

Equality duties do not only apply to solicitors as employers: all who provide a service to the public owe duties, breach of which could found a discrimination claim. Are you doing enough to meet them?

The Scottish draft Budget 2018-19: what happened?

In association with Tilney: implications of some of the personal tax proposals

Legal software: has your supplier been bought out?

In association with Insight Legal: what if your office system is no longer supported?

Asset finance: time for reform

The Scottish Law Commission has published its Report on Moveable Transactions, the emphasis of which is to enable businesses to raise finance against their assets more easily. What does it recommend?

Human trafficking from the defence perspective

A defence solicitor explains how cases in which an accused may have statutory protection as a victim of human trafficking or exploitation may arise in an unexpected context

Contract law in flux

Scots contract law is changing rapidly, and further reforms are on the way. This article outlines some key developments to keep up with

The limits of appeal

Latest civil cases, including leave to appeal; appeals generally; forum non conveniens; res judicata; family actions; jury trials; expenses; simple procedure; sanction for counsel; liquidation

Attention media lawyers

Criminal law briefing: advisers of media organisations should be aware that the imminent commencement of part 1 of the Criminal Justice (Scotland) Act 2016 will impact on the contempt of court law

Disability: a new focus

Licensing briefing: a legislative provision passed in 2010 is set finally to come into force, affecting premises licensing applications in relation to provision for disabled people

A tale of two Budgets

Tax briefing: significant features from the recent UK and Scottish Budgets include the divergence of income tax rates, relief for first time house buyers and new incentives for oil and gas investment

System redesign

Planning briefing: a Government bill makes sweeping changes, some controversial, in an attempt to improve efficiency in the system, enable quality development and increase community involvement

21st Century Bar rides again

The eagerly awaited return of the conference presented by the Faculty of Advocates for members of Faculty and the in-house legal community did not disappoint

Scottish Solicitors' Discipline Tribunal

Reports relating to William Walls; David James Rankin

Happy new year?

The Word of Gold: happiness is an elusive concept, but there are proven ways of bringing it closer

Specialist accreditation scheme relaunches

2018 will be a year of development for the Specialist Accreditation scheme, as the Society's team explains

Public policy highlights

Recent work of the Society's policy committees, including Brexit and human rights; Brexit: reciprocal healthcare; integrated environmental authorisation framework; access to elections; Budget

Paralegal pointers

The SPA intends to keep up its 2017 momentum in the coming year

Making the law work better

The convener of the Society's Public Policy Committee on the work of the committee in its first year (shorter version)

At the cutting EDGE

Do you know of Scottish EDGE? It’s there to support new businesses with original ideas, and would like more solicitors to become involved. The Journal met chief executive Evelyn McDonald

Confirmation declarations agreed

From the Professional Practice team: forms of declaration in applications for confirmation by executors nominate have been agreed between the Society and Scottish Courts & Tribunals Service

Q & A corner

Professional Practice advice: problems may be caused where an arrestment order against a firm is lodged with a bank where that firm holds its clients’ account

Documents, data and the GDPR

The General Data Protection Regulation provides an opportunity for solicitors to review their document retention policy. This article considers how to go about integrating the latter into the former

Ask Ash

Advice column: am I cut out to manage; and the importance of demanding some down time

Appreciation: Ethel May Houston OBE

Tribute to a pioneering woman in the Scottish legal profession who also worked as a codebreaker at Bletchley Park