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Bloomsburry Family law

Law Brief

R (Munjaz) v (1) Ashworth Hospital Authority (now Mersey Care NHS Trust) (Appellants) & (1) Mental Health Act Commission (2) MIND (3) Secretary of State for Health (Interveners) [2005] UKHL 58

Although the code of practice issued pursuant to the Mental Health Act 1983, s 118(1) provided guidance and not instructions, a hospital had to consider the code with great care and depart from it only if it had cogent reasons for doing so. In the circumstances, the policy of an NHS trust governing the seclusion of psychiatric patients detained at its high security mental hospital was lawful even though it departed from the code of practice.

R v Lee Oosthuizen [2005] EWCA Crim 1978

In the absence of statistics or other evidence identifying the prevalence of a particular offence in a particular area, a sentencing judge should not make the assumption that prevalence of that offence was more marked in the area with which he was familiar than it was nationally, especially where there was a guideline decision or guidance from the Sentencing Guidelines Council on the offence.

D Earle v Centrica Plc (2005)

Solicitors should not seek to circumvent the restrictions on their profit costs by delegating matters that would normally be viewed as solicitors' work to third parties who could claim as disbursements that which the solicitor would normally have been expected to perform within the predictable fee structure.

CMS Peripherals Ltd v Revenue & Customs (VADT19234) (2005)

Although insufficiency of funds was not a reasonable excuse for defaults in respect of VAT payment, the underlying cause could, depending on the facts, be a reasonable excuse. In the instant case, the taxpayer had a reasonable excuse for VAT defaults as the real cause of the defaults was the dishonest act of another person which resulted in a negative cash flow position.

Re T (A child) (2005)

On the evidence available the judge had been correct to make a residence order in favour of the father of a four-year-old girl.

R v Evans (2005)

As it had not been expressly stated in R v Afonso (2004) EWCA Crim 2342 the instant court made clear that the sentence level indicated of two to two-and-a-half years' imprisonment for the group identified in Afonso was intended for those with no criminal record. Those with significant criminal records, even without prior involvement with drugs, did not have the mitigating factor of good character that was material to the sentencing process.

Tennant v Adamczyk (2005)

A judge erred in holding that a claim for possession by the registered owners of land was disbarred by the Limitation Act 1980 due to the adverse possession of the land by an occupier when on the facts of the case no dispossession had actually occurred by the relevant date.

Richard Williams (As Personal Representative of Mary Philomena Williams, Deceased) v Revenue & Customs (SpC500) (2005)

For the purposes of the Inheritance Tax Act 1984, s 115(2), the requirements of Part 2 of the definition of "agricultural property" were satisfied if a building used in connection with the intensive rearing of livestock formed a subordinate part of the overall agricultural purposes for which the other land was occupied; and that requirement was satisfied even if the buildings were occupied for a free-standing purpose, so long as that purpose did not dominate the overall purposes of the use of the land and was a subsidiary part of the purpose of an overall agricultural activity carried out on the land occupied by one person.

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