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  • Don't bank on the Ombudsman

    Banks are often a law unto themselves. However, customers - both personal and commercial - can seek redress via the Financial Ombudsman Service. Whilst the the FOS can help almost all personal customers of banks when it comes to maladminstration of t... 

  • Empty property - empty relief?

    Property owners liability for business rates on empty properties changed in 2008; previously limited to 50 per cent of the rates bill, the cap was increased to 100 per cent of the rates bill. A huge problem and expense for anyone with unlet property.... 

  • Oscar gives three 'Likes' to The Social Network but prefers the king

    Not such a good night for The Social Network at the Oscars after all. Despite all the buzz around Facebook and social media, a film about an extremely posh English bloke with a speech impediment set in England in the 1930s took the major honours inst... 

  • Postal service hit with new VAT regime

    Death and taxes. The two certainties in life according to US founding father Benjamin Franklin. Well not to disappoint, the Government has now added VAT to certain postal services as of 31 January. So whilst standard UK services are still VAT exempt,... 

  • Productivity's very human limitations

    Productivity is an unwieldy sounding word but it comes up a lot in IT speak, usually as a promise or an outcome. "Increased productivity" is the favourite - well, people are hardly likely to trumpet "decreased productivity" in the... 

  • Wholly and Exclusively

    The subject of business expenses and what can be claimed is an old chestnut that many businesses still make mistakes over. A recent case, Azam v HMRC, looks again at expenses incurred 'wholly and exclusively' for the purposes of the business. In... 

  • ACAS offers a guiding light

    ACAS,the Government's arbitration service,and the TUC have produced a new guide entitled " Mediation: A guide for trade union representatives" that aims to raise awareness amongst trade union representatives of the benefits of mediation. ... 

  • Bribery Act delayed ... again...

    The implementation of the Bribery Act - see BusinessMan 2 November - has been delayed from its proposed start date in April. The cause of the delay is the Ministry of Justice, which still has to publish final Guidance on 'adequate procedures'. This s... 

  • Yet another skills shortage, why can't we try something different?

    I'm starting to get heartily sick of stories about skills shortages, usually around the latest technological trend. There's one on the MicroScope website today (22 February) about cloud computing which suggests the supply of consultants and developer... 

  • Changes afoot in the new Pensions Bill

    The Government has now published the Pensions Bill 2011 which includes, amongst things, provisions to implement automatic enrolment (along the lines of the recommendations of the recent DWP review). Other key measures include: Aligning the ea...