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Showing posts from January, 2011

Land Registry figures show further fall in house prices

The Land Registry has  announced that house prices are now just 1.5% higher than a year ago. As regards prices the news is no better with house prices falling by 0.2% in December compared with November, putting the average cost of a home at £163,814 in England and Wales. Some regions are however doing better than others. The highest price change is in London, which has experienced an annual increase of 6.2% and a monthly gain of 1%.
The picture for the immediate future looks gloomy with the  downward trend in prices looking to continue due the uncertainty regarding the economy and the Government’s spending cuts.
Mortgage approvals and house sales continue to fall and the housing market is expected to remain subdued throughout 2011 as a result.
Morgan Jones and Pett are solicitors who provide legal advice and services to clients based in England and Wales and who can be contacted on 01603877000 or via email at davidpett@m-j-p.co.uk

US Housing Market still failing to make a marked recovery

The latest Chief Economist's Weekly Brief form National Westminster Bank suggests that the large supply of housing stock, compared with falling demand, will continue to ‘weigh the market down’ and  cause a ‘drag’ on  the general economic recovery happening within the US.  This is evidenced  by US house prices falling by 0.5% m/m in November (1.6%y/y) bringing them down to 2003 levels. This is 30% below the peak and only 3% above the 2009 trough. 

Morgan Jones and Pett are solicitors who provide legal advice and services to clients based in England and Wales and who can be contacted on 01603877000 or via email at davidpett@m-j-p.co.uk

What is Astroturfing?

Astroturfing according to Wikipedia  ‘denotes political, advertising, or public relations campaigns that are formally planned by an organization, but are disguised as spontaneous, popular "grassroots" behavior’.
The idea behind such campaigns is to give the impression that the efforts of an entity, such as a company, have not come from the company but have been launched independently by members of the public.
A good example of this can be found in the efforts of a Montreal based marketing company, Morrow Communications, who were engaged to help prepare for the launch of a new public bike system, and who acknowledged creating a dummy blog falsely pretending to be managed by 3 individuals to promote the use of bicycles in Montreal. They also created videos for the Blog and a Facebook webpage. 
The use of Astroturfing in modern day marketing is wide spread and is often used to ‘hype’ a product and as mentioned above the impression that the product has a benefit that is already be…

The changing face of Housing

Unlike the Continent we are a land where the majority of us aspire to owning our own home. In fact according to the Housing and Planning Statistics 2009 there are 22 million dwellings of which 68% are owner occupied.   There are only according to these statistics around 3 million properties which are privately rented.  Contrast this with Germany where half of the housing stock is occupied by tenants.
So why are we so obsessed with ownership?  For many of us it is how we have been brought up, to do well at school, to find a job and to then look to buy a property, normally as part of settling down and starting a family.  It’s part of our make up as well as being regarded by some as a symbol of success.  For others home ownership is about financial security at a time when pensions and other investments are constantly at risk form economic downturn.  
The tide may however be changing or about to change and there are many reasons for this, the main one of which are the austerity measures tak…

Moving Home Tips

Moving home can be stressful.  Our conveyancing service  (www. mjpconveyancing.co.uk) is designed to make moving home a more relaxing experience and our home moving consultants are always on hand to help you with any queries.  
For starters here are some tips to help:
Redirect your mail
Don’t forget to have your mail redirected to your new home. Just take two forms of ID to the Post Office and ask for a mail redirection form. Find out more at http://www.royalmail.com/ . Don’t forget to forward mail to previous residents costs nothing, write ‘Not known at this address’ and their new details on the envelope or package then repost it.
Tell your doctor, dentists and health providers that you’ve moved
Make sure you tell your doctor and dentist your new address and contact details. Do the same for any other health clinic or hospital you attend regularly. Don’t be surprised if you have to register with a new GP.
Inform your insurance policies and pension providers
Take time to make sure your bank…

Compensation of £3,500 for accident on bus

Simon Bransby of MJP Solicitors has recently settled a case for a 56 year old lady recovering compensation of just over £3,500.00 for an accident on a bus when the driver braked sharply causing her to fall off her seat.
If you have been in a similar accident or wish for further information please contact Simon Bransby on  01603 877000 or by e-mail at simonbransby@m-j-p.co.uk
MJP Solicitors have a specialist team of personal injury and clinical negligence injury claim experts who offer free legal advice about taking a claim, if you, a friend or relative have been in an accident or suffered from medical negligence please get in touch with MJP Solicitors to find out what to do next on 01603 877000

Compensation of £12,000 for RTA Injury

Simon Bransby of MJP Solicitors has recently settled a case for a 39 year old man recovering compensation of £12,000.00 for an accident at work when his vehicle became unstable due to a generator having been poorly attached, and left the M6 Motorway. The Defendants fought the case for a long time but perseverance paid off as they settled shortly before the trial.
If you have been in a similar accident or wish for further information please contact Simon Bransby on  01603 877000 or by e-mail at simonbransby@m-j-p.co.uk
MJP Solicitors have a specialist team of personal injury and clinical negligence injury claim experts who offer free legal advice about taking a claim, if you, a friend or relative have been in an accident or suffered from medical negligence please get in touch with MJP Solicitors to find out what to do next on 01603 877000

Inquiries about pleural plaques

Simon Bransby of MJP Solicitors has recently been assisting clients with regard to pleural plaques under the Government Compensation Scheme (http://www.justice.gov.uk/guidance/pleural-plaques-compensation-scheme.htm)
If you have been the victim of asbestos exposure or wish for further information please contact Simon Bransby on  01603 877000 or by e-mail at simonbransby@m-j-p.co.uk
MJP Solicitors have a specialist team of personal injury and clinical negligence injury claim experts who offer free legal advice about taking a claim, if you, a friend or relative have been in an accident or suffered from medical negligence please get in touch with MJP Solicitors to find out what to do next on 01603 877000

Government proposals for employment law changes can only serve to restrict access to justice

Prime Minister David Cameron and Business Secretary Vince Cable have today announced proposed reforms to our employment legislation that includes:
• A fee to lodge a claim 
 • Compulsory mediation in all Tribunal claims • An increase in the level of continuous employment for claims of unfair dismissal from one to two years
The Government considers this will encourage employers to hire more employees and to in doing so help to reduce unemployment.  Those who represent employees consider this to be nonsense saying employment legislation has never deterred employees from engaging new staff.
The Government estimates this will lead to 3,700 - 4,700 fewer claims. Also, the potential introduction of a fee, provided employers are not subjected to a similar burden, could help to guard against spurious claims, which inevitably cost employers time and money.
These changes will have no affect on discrimination law and the ability to claim protection from day one.
Although employers will clearly welcom…

£11,500 compensation for failed toe surgery

Sara Westwood and partner and clinical negligence expert with MJP Solicitors has recently settled a case for a 57 year old lady recovering compensation of £11,500.00 for complications suffered as a result of negligent surgery to her toe.
If you have a similar concern or wish for further information please contact Sara Westwood on  01603 877000 or by e-mail at sarawestwood@m-j-p.co.uk
MJP Solicitors have a specialist team of clinical negligence injury claim experts who offer free legal advice about taking a claim, if you, a friend or relative have been the victim of medical negligence please get in touch with MJP Solicitorsto find out what to do next on 01603 877000

Ground Rent Disputes

MJP solicitors are currently assisting 23 clients who are seeking to recover damages from their former solicitors for professional negligence for failing to properly advise as to the consequences of a ground Rent revision in their lease which will considerably increase the ground rent payable at the 25 year review period.
If you have a similar concern or wish for further information please contact David Jones on  01603877000 or by e-mail at davidjones@m-j-p.co.uk

£50,000 compensation award for injured Skier

David Jones, a specialist Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence Lawyer, and partner of Morgan Jones and Pett Solicitors, and who acts for clients based nationwide, has recently negotiated a £50,400 award for a female client aged 60 who was injured whilst skiing in Austria. The client suffered multiple injuries to her left shoulder, left wrist and pelvis.
David enjoys a special interest in Skiing related accidents and has acted for many Skiers over the years. He can be contacted on 01603877000 or by e-mail at davidjones@m-j-p.co.uk

DePuy ASR system compensation claims

MJP Solicitors (www.m-j-p.co.uk) are helping clients with claims for compensation for personal injury caused by defective hip prostheses relating to metal on metal hip joints including the “DePuy ASR” system.
These claims are in respect of patients with metal on metal articulated joints who have developed problems post surgery potentially due to metallic wear which is inconsistent with the outcome of the expected following hip joint replacement causing pain and reduced mobility.
For further information please call David Jones on 01603 877000 or e-mail davidjones@m-j-p.co.uk

£15,000 compensation award for failed hip revision procedure

David Jones, a specialist Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence Lawyer, and partner of Morgan Jones and Pett Solicitors, and who acts for clients based nationwide, has recently negotiated a a settlement on behalf of an elderly female patient of £15,000, who suffered a failed hip revision procedure.

David is a member of the Law Society's Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence Panels and a Senior Litigator with APIL. He is also the founder member of the Norfolk and Norwich Medico-Legal Society as both Secretary and Chairman. He now specialises in Clinical Negligence and Personal Injury cases.. He can be contacted on 01603877000 or by e-mail at davidjones@m-j-p.co.uk

How to find a good and reliable personal injury solicitor

Choosing a solicitor to instruct on a personal injury case is not easy and can often be scary. No knowing how much it will cost and whether the solicitor is good or not are often factors that put people off from investigating the possibility of pursuing a compensation claim. We recognise it's all quite daunting.


So what can you do to check on the competency of the solicitor?


To begin with you should start by talking with some friends and family. Ask them what they have heard about solicitors in the area and if they know anyone that has had to work with a personal injury lawyer in the past. If you are successful in finding such a person always ask about the good and bad points they experienced with that solicitor.


You may have different expectations of your Solicitor and you have to make sure that you recognize and understand these expectations. If you cannot find anyone that has a recommendation you may want to start looking into the background of the Solicitor.

This is an impor…

Free Conveyancing

The concept of FREE conveyancing can be a reality and is likely to become one in the very near future. 



As with most things in life nothing is ever completely FREE, there is always a catch or a set of conditions.    This is no different in the case of a FREE conveyancing service.  For this to happen the insular approach to conveyancing and the distrust in referral fees has to change.

The profession can no longer continue to believe that a competitive service can be built and developed solely on the back of diminishing conveyancing fees.

From October there will be increased competition and this can lead only to even lower pricing and possibly a falling in the quality of service to the end user. If those providing a conveyancing service believe they will still be able to compete I am afraid they are in for a big surprise.
The time to think outside the box is here and now. 
There are many solicitors who have steered away from referral fees because of the horror stories that have over the ye…

How can I help my solicitor make my home move less stressful and quicker?

Solicitors despite the image some may give through poor client relations do understand that moving home is stressful and for the client is one of the most important lifetime experiences.   We know that you are worried about the transaction falling through before contracts are exchanged; we also know that making arrangements to move in to a home are fraught with complexity and expense.      We recogonise that you expect given this anxiety to be regularly informed about what is happening. This is understandable.
So what can you do to help?
To begin with you should at the outset receive a ‘pack’ of information from your solicitor containing documents of various description for you to read and in some instances complete.      I bet some of you think that we do this on purpose, that we send what may seem to be hundreds of documents in the hope that this will impress you and justify our modest fee!     The true answer however is that we are obliged to send some of these documents because of o…

Why the Law Society’s Conveyancing Quality Scheme is the final nail in the coffin for the high street conveyancing solicitor

Buying a home can be stressful and often leads to anxiety.    Those like myself who work in the industry understand this and though we work hard to take steps to ensure the stress is kept to its minimum, we are often left feeling equally frustrated. 
Most solicitors working in this sector are working 70 hour weeks plus if not longer trying to make some money out of what has fast become a very competitive and in the main profit losing area of legal work.
Those who understand conveyancing will know that given the antiquated system for conveying property in which we are forced to operate the only way to stand any chance of making some money is to commoditize the product, keep the price low and have in place good technology.    At the same time quality and client relations must be maintained.
The constant battle between competiveness and quality often makes it difficult for the solicitor to deliver the type of service that one would expect from a supplier of professional services. Whether …

Cut NHS compensation payments for clinical negligence by encouraging the delivery of an early apology

There is no doubt that those working in the NHS are committed to their work and we have some of the most skilled and hard working doctors and nurses in the world. 
However as in most sectors even the most trained and skilled employee can make mistakes/omissions particularly under pressure.  Not all mistakes or failures lead to unnecessary death or injury.   Sometimes we may not even beware that an oversight, mistake or omission has occurred.
On those occasions when something does go wrong however we often left feeling aggrieved and lost.    In the main there is very little information given about the situation, we are often left for months not knowing what has happened and who was to blame.    Unfortunately not all doctors and nurses are versed in the skills of PR and general communication.  In fact, another of complaints and claims for compensation would never appear if communication with a patient was given the priority it deserves.
When something goes wrong the first thing we need t…

Does the Andy Gray's dismissal mark an end to office 'banter'

Andy Gray made inappropriate remarks in the work place and has been punished for his conduct. Some may say the punishment was too harsh and disproportionate.  Others including myself are asking the question – has this incident marked the end of what has become a common characteristic of the work place that is, ‘office banter’.  Is this PC gone too far, particular at a time when we have a Government that is looking to reduce the level of red tape? 
I accept there is a fine line between respect for fellow workers and what some would call innocent banter. However in all of these cases each situation must be considered on its own facts and more importantly on how the banter is received. 
I am sure there will a lot of workers out there racking their brains to think whether they may find themselves in a similar position on the basis of remarks made in office conversations over the past month or so.  Re- living conversations at last year’s Christmas party must be happening in a number of off…

Make the right choice when instructing a lawyer to handle your home sale or purchase

Choosing a solicitor to handle the legal aspects of your home move can be difficult.  There are now so many different routes available to find a solicitor, it can often be confusing.  Where do you start?How do you know you are engaging a competent solicitor, and more importantly one who is prepared to communicate in language you understand?
Modern media and the rise, in particular, of price comparison websites have, regrettably, forced many sellers and buyers down the route of searching high and low for the cheapest supplier. Selecting a solicitor on the basis of how cheap the service may or may not be is not always sensible and can at the end of the day prove to be disastrous.
So what should you be looking for? Although it may be obvious, the clear goal must be to secure a competent lawyer at a competitive price and one who will do all he or she can to make sure you move home quickly and with the minimum of stress.  Though it may seem a tall order, this goal is not as difficult to fulf…

100Mbps Broadband for Cheshunt, Hatfield, Pentwyn, Southport and Treforest

Cheshunt, Hatfield, Pentwyn, Southport and Treforest are now benefiting from 100Mbps broadband thanks to Virgin Media’s on-going improvement to its broadband service. It is reported in techradar.com that Virgin has now rolled out to 350,000 homes across the UK.
Jon James, executive director of broadband at Virgin Media said: "From establishing the UK's first ever broadband service to the launch of 100Mb just ten years later, Virgin Media has led the greatest developments in digital Britain.
"We've invested many billions of private money in order to build a growing network that already passes approximately 13 million homes across the UK.
"We're racing to get these ultrafast speeds across this entire area as fast as we can to meet demand."
Read more: http://www.techradar.com/news/internet/virgin-media-rolls-out-100mbps-to-150k-more-homes-923560#ixzz1C34oVFKM

Stamp Duty ‘Hike’ in April causes rush for higher value property

The rate of stamp duty is set to rise from four to five per cent on April 6, meaning that a day could make a difference on high value properties of over £10,000 in tax. It is reported today that this has brought about an increase in buyers looking to purchase homes worth in excess of 1 million. The figures published show 'properties for sale in the £1 million-plus bracket has already undergone a 39 per cent boom this month - and there are 46 per cent more in the above-£5 million category'. The expectation however is that could following April create a vacuum in the market.
At MJP Solicitors we are able to put purchasers in touch with Tax Planners to explore options on possible Stamp Duty reductions. Email Davidpett@m-j-p.co.uk for further details.


What do a bottle of lager and two packets of crisps have in common with moving home?

The days of popping down to your local solicitor and sorting out your Will or the legal work in connection with moving home may be numbered, if as is anticipated large national corporations, which are more readily associated with the provision of groceries, such as the likes of Tesco and Marks and Spencer, decide to take advantage of the change in law that will happen in the latter part of next year.
Unless there is any change between now, and then, October 2011 will see the full introduction of the Legal Services Act. This will allow non-lawyer type organisations to offer and compete with legal practices in the provision of certain legal services such as conveyancing and possibly Wills. In other words the platform will be present for well-established national brands to broaden the spectrum of their current offerings and to enter the market and to offer commoditised and, as is likely low cost, legal products and services.
The model already exists with the Co-Op which is very stro…

Doom and Gloom remains within the Housing Market

We are still witnessing a continuation of the trend of falling house prices, although the fall in supply of housing stock did go some way towards supporting prices in December. The biggest problem at present is a fall in transaction levels made worse before Christmas due to poor weather conditions. The increase in some areas of the country of demand over supply has helped to raise levels of optimism amongst certain professionals. The biggest rise in confidence levels has been in London and the South East whereas prices continue to fall within Scotland, Northern Ireland and North of England.
The lack of credit and rising unemployment seem to be the main cause of a fall in demand. Although the unemployment rate remained at 7.9%, the number of people out of work rose by 49K to almost 2.5m over the three months to the end of November. Job insecurity and with the announcement today of a fall in growth suggests that unless we see a sudden change in Government Policy it is unlikely that th…