Last updateTue, 24 Feb 2015 5pm

Kayleigh Bloomfield discusses the (ir)revocability of agency agreements and constructive trusts upon insolvency

Agency is a universal and flexible institution fundamental to commerce. In a globalised commercial world, one of the most important decisions a business can make is the appointment of an intermediary to market and potentially distribute their products to markets that may otherwise be inaccessible or too difficult to manage principally. As such, agency and/or distribution agreements (ADAs) are regularly used by practitioners in the context of both domestic and international commercial transactions.

Robert Bruce summarises proposed planning legislation

The government has recently announced that it will bring forward a new Neighbourhood Planning and Infrastructure Bill in the Queen’s Speech.

Dr Sam De Silva reviews remuneration for service providers

There are a number of different pricing models that are used in outsourcing transactions. This is where the use of outside, independent consultants can be helpful because of their familiarity with different pricing models and their knowledge of going rates. While the customer will want to get the best price possible, it is important for the customer to understand that if the long-term relationship is to succeed, the service provider must make a reasonable return upon the investment that it is making in the outsourcing. A service provider that thinks that it is being underpaid will try to find ways to reduce its costs or increase the customer’s fees. The goal is to pay a fee that fairly rewards the service provider but does not overly reward the service provider to the detriment of the customer.

Crispin Rapinet and Khushaal Ved examine the here and now of enhanced UK efforts to make anti-bribery and corruption compliance the norm

Anti-bribery and corruption efforts are trending globally and the hype is very real in the UK. Fresh off the SFO’s conviction of Sweett Group, the first under s7 of the Bribery Act 2010 (UKBA), and the judicial approval of the first deferred prosecution agreement (DPA), with Standard Bank, the UK government has recently hosted an anti-corruption summit in London, suggesting a determined fostering of compliance.

Jeremy Farr and Shawn Kirby discuss the interpretation of a consequential loss clause

In a decision with potentially far-reaching implications for commercial parties generally and the energy industry in particular, the English Court of Appeal has handed down judgment on the construction of a consequential loss clause in a drilling contract between Transocean Drilling UK Ltd (Transocean) and Providence Resources plc (Providence) (Transocean Drilling UK Ltd v Providence Resources plc [2016]). In so doing it has given guidance on how consequential loss clauses should be interpreted.

Craig Bennett considers a recent Court of Appeal decision on the oral variation of contracts

Many contracts, including PFI project agreements, include a provision which prohibits oral variations and only permits variations when they are in writing.

Chris Syder looks at the potential impact of the Modern Slavery Act

The UK’s Modern Slavery Act 2015 (the Act) not only sets out stronger criminal sanctions against those who profit from this form of gross human exploitation, but has provided society with the opportunity to scrutinise and hold businesses more accountable for what they are doing to counter modern slavery. The Act requires both UK and foreign companies and other commercial organisations (including partnerships and LLPs) that carry out any business involving goods and/or services in the UK, and have a global annual turnover of £36m or more, to prepare and publish a slavery and human trafficking statement (a statement) for each financial year ‘as soon as reasonably practicable after the end of each financial year’. Businesses with a year end of 31 March 2016 were the first required to publish a statement under the Transparency in Supply Chains clause.

Nigel Howorth and Michael Coxall report on significant planning reforms

The Housing and Planning Act 2016 (the Act) has received Royal Assent. It provides framework powers for a number of significant planning reforms including the requirements to provide starter homes within residential development, a new route to planning permission through ‘permission in principle’, a disputes mechanism for parties struggling to agree terms of a section 106 agreement, and new powers to override private rights to replace the current ‘section 237’ powers. In this article, we comment on the principle elements of planning-related reform.