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- The Civil Justice Council has made a number of amendments to its guidance on the instruction of experts in civil claims.
Education and children’s services:
- The Local Authority (Duty to Secure Early Years Provisions Free of Charge) Regulations 2014 have been laid and will come into force on 8 September 2014.
- The Court of Appeal has:
- The High Court has held that transfer requests under Article 15 of Council Regulation (EC) 2201/2003 (concerning jurisdiction and the recognition and enforcement of judgments in matrimonial matters and parental responsibility matters) should not be subjected to delay (Suffolk County Council v DL).
- The Family Court has:
- held that a local authority should have considered special guardianship outside the family for two Muslim children (Milton Keynes Council v A, B, X and Y (Muslim Children, Special Guardianship); and
- criticised a local authority for providing inadequate welfare evidence in a care proceedings case, going against existing case law and statutory authority (Re R (A Child) (inadequate welfare evidence)).
- The President of the Family Division has issued a consultation paper seeking views on the publication of family judgments.
- The Association of Directors of Social Services and CAFCASS have published a template for local authority social work statements.
Employment and pensions:
- The EAT has held:
- that a relocation of a business following a TUPE transfer did not amount to a substantial change to employees’ working conditions to their material detriment (Cetinsoy and others v London United Busways Ltd); and
- that there was no service provision change under TUPE where a contract to provide security at a business centre was terminated by the company managing the centre on behalf of a local authority (Horizon Security Services Ltd v Ndeze and another).
- GAD has confirmed that it will now accept applications for broad comparability assessments (also known as “passports”) against the Principal Civil Service Pension Scheme.
- The Court of Appeal has refused an application for judicial review of the High Court’s decision to refuse to grant a development consent order for construction of a new nuclear power plant at Hinkley (R (An Taisce (The National Trust for Ireland)) v Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change and another).
- The High Court has held that a strategic environmental assessment was not needed in respect of the HS2 rail network safeguarding directions (R (HS2 Action Alliance Ltd and Others) v Secretary of State for Transport).
FOI and data protection:
- The ICO has published a report on its audits of personal data handling by selected local authorities in 2013.
- The Court of Protection has given guidance on urgent, out of hours applications relating to best interests decisions about medical treatment (Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust v CD and others).
- The National Measurements Office has updated its guidance on the enforcement of weights and measures to include a section on market surveillance.
Property and planning:
- The Land Registry has published Practice Guide 77 on altering the register by removing land from a title plan.
- DECC has published two consultations on minimum energy efficiency standards for private rented sector properties (commercial and domestic).
- The Cabinet Office and HMRC have announced the results of a review of the 2013 policy to use public procurement to encourage tax compliance.