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Miller Samuel Hill Brown Solicitors Blog

Miller Samuel provides quality legal advice throughout the UK and beyond. Our specialist teams work closely together, providing tailored and innovative solutions for our clients.

Miller Samuel Hill Brown provides quality legal advice throughout the UK and beyond. Our specialist teams work closely together, providing tailored and innovative solutions for our clients.

Research finds GP fit notes not effective

A recent website poll by the Chartered Institute of Payroll Professionals (CIPP) has found that 90% of employers do not believe the GP fit note is effective.

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Employment law legislation changes in April

The last 6 months has been a busy and interesting time in the world of employment law. While the government’s ongoing review continues to identify those areas where it is felt change is necessary, this week sees the first round of new measures coming into force. The changes of note are:

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Supreme Court rules on mesothelioma liability 'trigger'

The Supreme Court has given its ruling in a dispute between employers and insurance companies over when liability for contracting mesothelioma is triggered.Mesothelioma is a terminal form of cancer caused by exposure to asbestos. It has an unusually long gestation period, which can be in excess of 40 years between exposure to asbestos and manifestation of the disease.The insurers had claimed that employer's liability policies should only cover mesothelioma which manifested as a disease at some point during the relevant policy period. Employers, however, claimed that the insurance policies should cover mesothelioma caused by exposure to asbestos during the relevant policy period but which develops and manifests itself sometime later.The Supreme Court has now dismissed the insurance companies' appeal, and ruled that ruled that the liability 'trigger' for mesothelioma occurs at the point when negligent exposure to asbestos takes place, and not when the disease starts to manifest.Greeting the verdict, Nick Starling, ABI’s Director of General Insurance and Health, said:“The ABI and our members are committed to paying compensation as quickly as possible to people with mesothelioma who have been exposed to asbestos in the workplace. We have always opposed the attempt to change the basis on which mesothelioma claims should be paid, as argued by those who brought this litigation. Today’s ruling by the Supreme Court has confirmed what most in the industry have always understood – that the insurer on cover when the claimant was exposed to asbestos should pay the claim, rather than the insurer on cover when the mesothelioma develops. This case has been pursued by a small group of "run-off" insurers acting independently and at odds with the views of the majority of the UK insurance industry.”

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Government reviews dismissal rules

The UK Government has recently published a Call For Evidence, asking interested parties for their views on whether current dismissal procedures are too onerous, too complex and whether or not there is a lack of understanding in their application.Business Secretary Vince Cable said:“The UK already has one of the world’s most flexible, adaptable labour markets, making it one of our strengths and it stands up very well in international comparisons. However, we recognise that there is room for improvement which balances the needs of business while ensuring that the necessary employment protections are upheld.“We are already implementing a radical package of reforms to the employment tribunal system and increasing the qualifying period for unfair dismissal from one to two years. These are all measures that will help improve the way businesses hire, manage and end a working relationship.”The Government is also seeking views on the idea of compensated no-fault dismissal for micro-businesses with fewer than ten employees. Under such a system, a business would be able to dismiss a worker from a micro-business, where no fault had been identified on the part of the employee, with the payment of a set amount of compensation.In addition, the Government has published the Employment Law Review annual update in the Houses of Parliament, outlining how the review has been taken forward. The report summarises the current programme and looks ahead to further areas it is considering as part of the review.

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Miller Samuel's Latest News

From time to time we will post news articles and announcements relating to the firm and to various legal issues that may be of interest to you.

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