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In brief for week ending 14 June 2017

Make sure that you have not missed a key development in your area of the law by reading our In brief review of the latest Practical Law Local Government email.

Adult social services:

  • The Welsh Government has published a consultation seeking views on the workforce aspects within phase 2 of implementing the Regulation and Inspection of Social Care (Wales) Act 2016.
  • The Care Quality Commission has opened a consultation on a further set of proposed regulations for health and social care.

Civil litigation:

  • The High Court has:
    • dismissed a defendant’s application under CPR 39.3 to set aside a default judgment and an assessment of libel damages following his failure to attend trial (Royal Brompton and Harefield NHS Trust and others v Shaikh); and
    • refused an application for the release of an audio recording of a court judgment, providing an interesting analysis of the role of court transcripts and the practice of judges altering transcripts and judgments (Bath v Escott).
  • The Business and Property Courts in Leeds, Manchester, Bristol and Cardiff will be opened in July 2017.

Employment and pensions:

  • Advocate General Tanchev has given his opinion that a worker is entitled to be paid on termination for any periods of annual leave that have accrued during employment, which the worker has been discouraged from taking because it would have been unpaid. In the Advocate General’s view, it was unreasonable to expect a worker to take annual leave before they knew whether they would be paid for it (King v The Sash Window Workshop Ltd and another).
  • The EAT has upheld a tribunal’s decision that making an employee redundant after a period of disability-related sickness absence was not discrimination arising from disability and given guidance on the causative test for discrimination arising from disability set out in section 15 of the Equality Act 2010 (Charlesworth v Dransfields Engineering Services Ltd).
  • The Ministry of Justice has published quarterly statistics for all tribunals, including the employment tribunal, for the period January to March 2017.

FOI and data protection:

  • The Local Government Association has published guidance on the Digital Economy Act 2017 for local authorities.
  • The Information Commissioner’s Office has issued a council a £100,000 monetary penalty under section 55 of the Data Protection Act 1998 for a serious contravention of the seventh data protection principle.

Housing:

  • The High Court has held that a council’s policy for making direct offers of social housing to applicants under its housing allocation scheme was unlawful (R (C) v London Borough of Islington).
  • The Local Government Association has published a guide to the Homelessness Reduction Act 2017, aimed at local authorities.

Local government law:

  • The Local Government Association has published guidance to councils on setting local licence fees, aimed at assisting councils to understand the full breadth of issues that should be considered in the process.

Property and planning:

  • The Welsh Chief Planner and Cadw have written to all heads of planning in Wales to advise them on the implementation of the Historic Environment (Wales) Act 2016.

Public procurement:

  • The ECJ has ruled that a clause in a tender specification for a public contract, that was in accordance with the law of the contracting authority’s member state, breached the requirements of Articles 2, 23(2) and 23(8) of Directive 2004/18/EC and Article 34 TFEU read in conjunction with Article 36 TFEU (Medisanus d.o.o. v Splosna Bolnisnica Murska Sobota).
  • The Crown Commercial Service has published its customer update for June 2017.
  • The Local Government Association has published guidance on the use of dynamic purchasing systems in the public sector.

Regulation and enforcement:

  • The Health and Safety Executive has announced that a care home company has been fined £450,000 after pleading guilty to breaching section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 in the Crown Court.
  • The Local Government Association has published guidance for councils on Public Space Protection Orders.
Practical Law In brief

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