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Advantage Litigation News & Updates

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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Recent blog posts

GDPR’s European-wide introduction in May 2018, combined with an increasing awareness of data privacy issues amongst businesses and individuals is likely to result in an increase in data privacy related class action (also known as group action) claims and litigation in the UK.

The total number of individuals being formally declared as insolvent has reached its highest level for the past six years, based on data from March to May 2018. There are now a record number of UK citizens proceeding with Individual Voluntary Agreements (IVA’s), an arrangement whereby individual debtors agree to repay their creditors some or all of what they owe.

Amongst the current turmoil surrounding the UK’s exit from the European Union, a recent survey on commercial legal services behaviour by Thomson Reuters adds to the litany of negative news emanating from all parts of UK society.

Drivers of London’s iconic black cabs are planning to sue Uber for £1.25billion in 'lost earnings', according to a new report. The Licensed Taxi Drivers' Association (LTDA) is working with leading law firm Mishcon de Reya to explore its options in making a legal claim against the online ride hailing giant.

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A long running property dispute involving a father and son has reached the High Court in London in highly acrimonious circumstances.

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A recent ruling by the High Court in London has resulted in a decision to award a health services contract to a private company being blocked.

Lancashire County Council wanted to outsource children’s health services to private provider Virgin Care, in a contract worth £104m. However, a combined challenge to the contract from Blackpool Teaching Hospitals Trust and Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust (LCFT) succeeded in arguing that Lancashire County Council had not followed the correct procurement process.

Kazakh businessman Ilyas Khrapunov has been ordered by the High Court in London to provide full details of how he is funding litigation against him and who is providing the funding for his legal expenses. Khrapunov is the son in law of Mukhtar Ablyazov, who is being accused of misappropriating $6bn from Kazakhstan’s JSC BTA Bank prior to its nationalisation in 2009.

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Tennis legend Boris Becker, who won the first of 3 men’s singles at Wimbledon in 1985 at the tender age of 17 and who earned $25m in a successful 22 year playing career, is taking a somewhat unconventional approach in trying to avoid bankruptcy proceedings in the UK Courts. The popular ex-player turned TV pundit was declared bankrupt in June 2017, owing bankers Arbuthnot Latham & Co an undisclosed sum of money.

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Now that GDPR – the new, European-wide General Data Protection Regulation – has come into effect from 25th May 2018, observers in the UK legal profession are anticipating an increase in data protection based legal actions, with group / class actions being increasingly likely. Group actions, whereby a group or collective of claimants come together and are represented legally by a member of that group (usually a lawyer, solicitor or law fim), aren’t particularly common in the UK but changes to the Civil Procedure Rules (‘CPR’) back in 1999do allow such actions.

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Following May’s hugely successful royal wedding in which US actress Meghan Markle married Prince Harry, sixth in the line of succession to the British throne, a row has broken out over the design of Markle’s dress.

It’s an unfortunate fact of business life that at some point, you may need to take formal legal action to recover monies owed to you or your business. There are two main approaches to collecting such debts; direct legal action through the courts, or appointing an external debt collection agency.

There was a lot of coverage in the UK media back in March 2018 regarding the so called ‘great chicken crisis 2018’, where hundreds of KFC stores throughout the UK had to close because deliveries of chicken – the prime menu item on most KFC meals – failed to reach the stores. As most of these stores operate on a franchise basis, with the store owner being the franchisee and KFC being the franchisor, the question now being asked is can the stores be compensated for loss of earnings?

Hip hop and rap superstar Dr Dre has lost a recent trademark legal action in the US to a gynaecologist called Dr Drai.

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Martin Lewis, the brains behind popular consumer advice website ‘Moneysavingexpert.com’ and presenter of ITV’s ‘The Martin Lewis Money Show’, has recently issued proceedings in the High Court against internet and social media giant Facebook.

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In what is a sign of things to come for many elements of the civil justice system in the UK, earlier this month the first stage of the Ministry of Justice’s (MOJ) Online Court went live in beta / live test form. The new online system, which over time is set to replace the current, ageing Money Claims Online (MCOL) system, will allow members of the public to issue county court money claims up to £10,000 in value. MCOL will remain live during the beta test period. A spokesperson for the MOJ said that the new technology and scheme “begins to deliver the vision set out by Lord Briggs… where he called for claims worth up to £25,000 to be solved in an online court”.

A recent decision by the European court of justice (ECJ) in Luxembourg means that the four finger Kit Kat chocolate and biscuit bar is set to lose its protected trademark status, opening up the likelihood of ‘copy-cat Kit Kat’s’ from rival manufacturers. The ECJ’s advocate general advised judges to throw out manufacturer Nestle’s appeal, and whilst the advocate generals advice is not binding, it’s very likely that it will be followed.

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In what has been described as one of the largest contract update and re-drafting exercises in history, legal services provider Axiom is now able to provide an AI (artificial intelligence) based process designed specifically to help companies update over 7.5 million financial services agreements and contracts in the run-up to Brexit.

Andrew McCabe, the former FBI Deputy Director whose employment contract was recently terminated by USA’s Trump administration has managed to raise over $300,000 (over £200,000) to cover legal defence costs via the crowdfunding platform ‘GoFundMe’.

A recent announced by the IPO (the UK Intellectual Property Office) as confirmed that the UK has now finalised and ratified an agreement that will make it easier for the owners of intellectual property to register designs in multiple jurisdictions and territories, and for them to take appropriate legal action if required to protect such designs.

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A recent High Court case has made it clear that Litigants in Person (known as LiPS – private individuals who are representing themselves in Court) will not get special treatment when bringing a legal action in the UK.

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