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It has been reported by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) here… that two partners in a local farming company have been fined following one of their employees suffering a serious injury.

It was heard by Lincoln Magistrates Court that an employee of the farming company was cleaning and emptying a potato grading machine at the time of the accident. The employee climbed onto the side of the grader and attempted to move any remaining potatoes, but when doing so, got his gloves caught by the rollers which pulled his arm into the unguarded contra-rotating haulm rollers. The employee suffered serious injuries to his right arm.

Further to an investigation by the HSE it was found that the contra-rotating rollers should have been guarded and a safe stop procedure could have been followed.

Martin Giles, HSE Inspector, commented that

“this injury could have been easily prevented and the risk should have been identified. Employers should make sure they properly assess and apply effective control measures to minimise the risk from dangerous parts of machinery.”

The partners of the company were both fined £5,000.00 further to pleading guilty to the following two breaches. Firstly, for failing to make a suitable and sufficient assessment of the risks to health and safety of their employees to which they are exposed whilst at work (Regulation 3(1) Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999). Secondly, for failing to ensure that measurements were in place to prevent access to any dangerous part of machinery, and to stop the movement of any dangerous parts of machinery before any part of a person enters the danger zone (Regulation 11 The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998). If the above two Regulations had been adhered to, the injury suffered by the employee could have been avoided.

It is this duty of an employer to provide a safe premises, safe plant, material and equipment and a safe system of work to his employees.

If you have suffered an injury further to an accident at work, it may not be the fault of your employer, however if it could have been avoided then you may have a claim for personal injury. A successful claim can help you recover lost wages as a result of time off and even provide you with private medical treatment.

If you have suffered an injury at work and you believe you sustained the injury due to lack of training of other employees, lack of equipment or faulty work equipment, or you feel the planning of the work was not adequate then contact our team today at Ringrose Law where we can advise you if you have a claim. We at Ringrose Law understand it can be difficult for some people to consider action against their employer, it should be remembered that they have Employer Liability Insurance for this very reason. Call our Personal Injury team on 01522 561020 for a free confidential discussion.

The post Partners of a Farming Company Fined further to an Accident at Work appeared first on Ringrose Law.

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In the traditions of society, men were deemed to be the ‘breadwinners’ and the ones who were more able to enter the workplace and deal with issues. However, according to a survey by Mind, men find their work to be the biggest cause of any mental health issues, with 32% of males as opposed to 19% of females blaming their work for causing their mental health issues.

200,000 men have reported to their employer about feeling either stressed, depressed or anxious due to work. This accounts for only 1.2% of men currently in work. Yet when ‘Men’s Health Forum’ completed a recent survey, 34% of men confirmed they felt constantly under pressure or even stressed.

Because men feel they have a lot to live up to – an image society has created for them – many men will suffer debilitating mental health issues completely in silence, without any assistance at all, purely because they feel to not do so would be weak. Many men will choose not to speak openly with colleagues or line managers about the problems they endure and they are much less likely to take time off to improve their issues.

Currently 3 in 4 individuals who commit suicide are men, with this being the biggest cause of death for men below 35. Men are also statistically more likely to use other methods i.e. alcohol, to attempt to control their feelings therefore, other issues can also manifest.

Ultimately mental health issues can affect men and women, at any age. Therefore, employers need to ensure they are doing all they can to enable their employees to have access to help, if they need it. Any employer owes their employee a duty of care to assist in order that good mental health is achieved.

Therefore, if as an employee you need help, speak with a member of your team.

The post The impact of mental health on a male appeared first on Ringrose Law.

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The National Board set up to improve the performance of the Family Justice System and chaired by Government Ministers had not met for 17 months until recently, the President of the Family Division has revealed.

For this critical co-ordinated body not to be functioning at a time of crisis “is a disaster”, Lord Justice Andrew McFarland declared.

McFarland takes over from Sir James Munby as Family Division chief next month and was speaking at an event to unveil the findings of a cross sector review, funded by the foundation, into the crisis of children and social care.

The Court of Appeal Judge said Munby was “right to blow the whistle when he did” two years ago, over the significant rise in number of care applications being received by the Courts.

Judges are dealing with a higher number of private law applications as well as an increase of public law work load. Pre-proceedings work under public law orders are seen to be the entrance lobby to the Court route where the Local Authority are doing no more than ticking a box or using the process to gather evidence rather than making a genuine effort to deliver a wakeup call to parents and divert them from the Court process.

Family Justice Boards are essential to the system operating well. The Family Justice Board is chaired by the Ministry of Justice and Department for education. There are 3 sub-groups: the Family Justice Council, Family Justice Young People’s Board and a performance sub-group. McFarland said that the Performance sub group is the only arm that is active.

 He is quoted as saying “ for this decline to be reversed immediately, is, to my mind, a no brainer”.  If you feel aggrieved by the Family Justice system, please contact any of our specialist family advisors in any one of our offices at Boston, Lincoln, Sleaford, Spalding, Newark or Grantham.

The post Family Justice System not met for 17 Months! appeared first on Ringrose Law.

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Police have revealed the shocking extent of the surge in domestic violence when England play in the World Cup as they promise to support victims and tackle abusers.

Throughout the tournament Police will be sharing details of the support available to perpetrators and victims of domestic abuse so they can seek help.

Police also want to highlight the common signs of an abusive relationship so that everyone is aware what to look out for and help family and friends who might be suffering from domestic abuse, get the support they need.

According to research by the Royal Statistical Society, the number of domestic abuse reports rises by as much as 32 per cent if England lose in international tournaments and 28 per cent if they win.

But many more people could be suffering in silence, with research showing that the average victim will suffer in excess of 50 incidents before they tell anyone.

Domestic abuse does not have to be a physical act, it can also be psychological, emotional, sexual or financial. We are keen to warn those who treat their partners this way that there will be serious consequences for their actions.

Abusing anyone, whether during the World Cup or not, may lead to arrest, charge and orders being sought, prohibiting them from returning home to continue that abuse.

Major sporting events like the World Cup do not themselves cause domestic abuse. However, some people drink too much alcohol which, when combined with the high emotions during and after matches, can increase the risk of unnecessary abuse.

The evidence clearly shows an increase in reports of domestic abuse during football tournaments. Win or lose, the heightened emotions, excitement and disappointment fuelled by excess alcohol, is often a volatile mix and can have a devastating impact on victims, families and particularly children.

The post The changing way we watch football means women are more likely to face domestic violence during the World Cup appeared first on Ringrose Law.

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The government faces renewed pressure to reform ‘outdated’ family law as a result of a widely awaited decision relating to a high-profile divorce case currently being heard in the Supreme Court.

The UK’s highest Court is hearing Owens v Owens after the Court of Appeal ruled that it could not interfere with a lower court’s decision to refuse to grant Tini Owens a Decree Nisi, even though the Judge had correctly found that the marriage had broken down.

Lady Hale, Supreme Court president, said that the case is a ‘rare example of the Court rejecting a behaviour petition on the ground that the husband’s behaviour was not objectively bad enough to make it unreasonable for the wife to live with him’.

Solicitor, Simon Beccle, a partner at London firm Payne Hicks Beach, is representing Tini Owens and is reported as saying that the appeal is not about the Supreme Court changing the law nor is it about the concept of ‘no-fault-divorce’.

He went on to say ‘Rather, it concerns the proper interpretation and application of section 1(2)(b) of the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973, the statute that applies when one person wishes to divorce another in England and Wales. That legislation provides that a divorce may be granted on the sole ground that the marriage has broken down irretrievably. Mrs Owens needs to satisfy the court that Mr Owens has behaved in such a way that she cannot reasonably be expected to live with him’.

At present, couples are unable to divorce without blaming the other party unless they have been separated for two years and both parties consent.

If consent is not given, a spouse has to wait five years. Family law group, Resolution, has called current legislation ‘outdated’ and ‘unfair’ and, indeed, divorcing couples often appear reluctant to give examples of their spouses, so called, ‘unreasonable behaviour’ particularly in circumstances where the parties have simply grown apart over time.

Hale is said to have permitted Resolution to intervene in the case ‘because they concentrated on the legal rather than the policy arguments. What the current law is and what the law ought to be are quite separate matters’.

Beccle is reported as saying that a successful outcome for his client ‘is likely to mean that there is less need for one party to cite detailed and often unpleasant particulars of how the other has behaved, with the focus being instead on the effect the behaviour has had on the party seeking a divorce, regardless of whether it is objectively bad or otherwise blameworthy’.  His position also appears to be gaining widespread support.

The post Divorce appeared first on Ringrose Law.

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For a lot of people once the financial settlement has been dealt with they assume that this is the end of the issues relating to divorce. 

Generally it comes as a relief that matters have been settled.  Both parties can start to rebuild their lives and for those who have been able to achieve a clean break settlement then it is most likely the end however, for those who continue to pay or receive Spousal Maintenance that is not always the case. 

Spousal Maintenance may be paid for a period of time, with the Court reserving the power to extend that period – or not as the case may be.  In some cases maintenance will have no end date and will only be stopped on the orders of the Court or on the death of the payer or the payee. 

 If, as time goes by one of the parties wishes to end the maintenance arrangement there are various ways that this can be done:-
  1. By mutual consent,
  2. By making an application to the Court.  This is not a recommended route as it can be extremely costly. 

 Also under Section 31 of the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 a party who is in receipt of maintenance can apply to the Court for a lump sum or capital instead of continuing payments.  This can on occasions be a very attractive prospect particularly if the recipient is involved in another relationship which if it turns into marriage would mean the maintenance would end.  Applications under Section 31 are often made in response to an application to vary maintenance downwards or to terminate it. 

 If you are about to settle your case on a continuing maintenance basis you should bear in mind that Section 31 of the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 is an alternative option to you as time goes on. 

The post Maintenance, Remarriage and Other Events appeared first on Ringrose Law.

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It has been reported by the HSE here: that RRS London Waste Papers Ltd have been sentenced after health and safety breaches resulted in the death of one of their employees.

Westminster Magistrates’ Court heard how a RRS London Waste Papers Ltd worker was found dead inside the compaction chamber of a baling machine. The worker had suffered fatal crush injuries.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) into the incident, which occurred on 27 March 2017, found the worker had fallen down the loading hopper into the compaction chamber of a baling machine. He was most likely attempting to clear a blockage and falling into the chamber initiated the compaction sequence.

The investigation found that this could have been prevented had RRS London Waste Papers Ltd devised and instructed workers on a safe method for clearing machine blockages. Climbing up the baler to clear machine blockages exposed workers to the risk of falling a significant distance either into the compaction chamber or the surrounding concrete floor.

RRS London Waste Papers Ltd of Manor Road, Erith was found guilty of breaching Section 2 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Nicholas Wright said: “This tragic incident, which led to the avoidable death of a father, was easily preventable and the risk should have been identified.”

“Employers should make sure they properly assess and apply effective control measures to minimise the risk from dangerous parts of machinery. Maintenance work should only be carried out when the piece of equipment is isolated and confirmed safe. Companies should be aware that HSE will not hesitate to take enforcement action against those that fall below the required standards.”

An employer is under a duty to take reasonable care of its employees’ health and safety, and has a duty to ensure the safety of its employees. An employer must provide safe premises, a safe place to work, safe plant, material and equipment and a safe system of working. If you have suffered an injury, caused by lack of safety equipment or faulty work equipment, then contact our team today at Ringrose Law on 01522 561020, where we can advise you if you have a claim..

 *Remember always fill in the accident book and report any incidences of a near miss to your employer*

The post Company found guilty after worker tragically killed appeared first on Ringrose Law.

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Continuing with the current growth and expansion plans at Ringrose Law, the firm is delighted to announce sixteen senior career development packages within the firm.

Six members of staff have been promoted to Associate, including the firm’s Head of IT, Head of HR, Marketing Manager and Head of Accounts; and ten members of staff have been promoted to Senior Associate from various departments within the firm.

The promotions recognise the commitment and dedication of these and all the staff at Ringrose Law and the commitment of the Partners to ensure a succession plan and long term strategy is put in place as the firm continues to grow.

Richard Teare, newly promoted Senior Associate and Solicitor for the Personal Injury team, joined the firm in the autumn of 2014;

“To be recognised in this way by Ringrose Law, one of the largest and most well-respected firms within Lincolnshire, is a great feeling for me personally.  To see my colleagues similarly rewarded for their hard work gives me great confidence for the future.”

Paul Cooper, Senior and Managing Partner at the firm comments:

“All these staff members have each made a significant contribution to the firm and thoroughly deserve their career advancements .The firm acknowledges these are in recognition of and testament to, their hard work and dedication. We are committed to developing and investing in all our staff and recognise their achievements within the firm. The fact that we have rewarded our HR, IT, Marketing and Accounts staff is innovative and indicative of our appreciation of our non-lawyers within the organisation as well.”

The new financial year has also welcomed a significant recruitment drive into the firm with new positions in the Commercial, Corporate, Dispute Resolution, Residential Conveyancing and Family teams.

Ringrose Law is one of the leading law firms across Lincolnshire and Newark, with six offices across Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire and employing over 150 staff.

The firm continue to offer a full complement of legal services to both individuals and local businesses.

Picture Credit (L-R) David Heath – Partner, Bev Kirk – Senior Associate, Alex Bennett – Associate, Richard Teare – Senior Associate, Amanda Green – Senior Associate, Costa Kyriacou – Senior Associate, Lisa Gamwell – Associate, Emma McGrath – Senior Associate, Samantha Turner – Senior Associate, Kelly Langworthy – Senior Associate, Tracey Garner – Senior Associate, Chris Randall – Associate, Paul Cooper  – Managing Partner

The post Leading law firm announces advanced career progression programme as part of its continual ongoing growth plan appeared first on Ringrose Law.

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Bladed articles and offensive weapon possession sentencings are changed in the UK from 1 June 2018.

Under the new guidelines, located here: could see increases in sentencing levels especially when the offender has previous convictions for like offences. These guidelines apply to all Defendants sentenced on or after June 1st 2018 irrespective of when the offence took place.

Sentencing guidelines range from a Band C fine (150% of relevant weekly income) to 36 months in custody and therefore if you have been charged with possession of a bladed article or an offensive weapon we advise that you get immediate legal advice to obtain the best outcome possible.

The minimum terms for second or further relevant offence means that the court must impose a sentence of at least 6 months’ imprisonment where this is a second or further relevant offence unless the court is of the opinion that there are particular circumstances relating to the offence, the previous offence or the offender which make it unjust to do so in all the circumstances.

What happens if I am arrested?

 If you are arrested you are entitled to free and independent legal advice so ask for Ringrose Law at the Police station and we will attend as soon as possible.

What if I am charged after arrest?

The first question we will ask is whether the prosecution can prove the case against you. If there is a realistic prospect of fighting the case, then we will advise you of this, and let you decide how you wish to proceed.

If you decide that you should admit the offence, we will guide you through the Court procedure and represent you in court so that you receive the sentence that best suits your circumstances.

If you need expert legal advice then call Ringrose Law.

We have offices located across Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire in Boston, Grantham, Lincoln, Newark, Sleaford and Spalding.

The post Changes in sentencing guidelines for bladed articles and offensive weapons appeared first on Ringrose Law.

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We are delighted to announce that Solicitor and Senior Associate, Costa Kyriacou has recently been awarded membership of the Law Society’s Children Panel.

Achieving membership demonstrates Costa’s commitment to helping his clients, his knowledge and expertise in dealing with children law proceedings and enables Costa to represent children.

Costa joins two other Lawyers at Ringrose Law with this membership, Paul Cooper and Lyn Jahangir, demonstrating Ringrose Law’s commitment, expertise and credibility in dealing with children law matters.

Costa is based at our Lincoln Office and was recently promoted to Senior Associate for the firm. Since qualifying as a Solicitor in 2014, Costa has built a very strong reputation for himself in the Children Law arena across Lincolnshire and was appointed as Head of the Child Social Care Department for the firm last year.

Costa comments:

“I am absolutely thrilled to have been awarded membership of the Law Society’s Children Panel, following completion of the Law Society’s Children Law Accreditation and a subsequent interview exam at the Law Society’s building in London in May. This is something that I have worked hard for and that I have aspired to achieve.

I have already been instructed on a number of cases representing children and I am very much looking forward to taking on more of these cases.”

Costa and his team cover all aspects of Children Law including proceedings relating to the following orders (although this is not an exhaustive list):

  • Child Arrangements Orders (formerly residence and contact orders)
  • Prohibited Steps Orders
  • Specific Issue Orders
  • Parental Responsibility Orders
  • Family Assistance Orders
  • Care Orders
  • Supervision Orders
  • Special Guardianship Orders
  • Placement Orders (for Adoption)
  • Adoption Orders

Whilst the accreditation enables Costa to represent children, he also regularly represents different parties, including: parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles and siblings. He has done this locally, nationally, and even internationally.

Costa deals with a broad range of issues within children law proceedings including: neglect, non-accidental injury, sexual abuse, drug and alcohol abuse, domestic abuse, fabricated and induced illness, mental health and cases with international elements.

To find out more please contact Costa and his team at our Lincoln Office on 01522 561020.

The post Costa Kyriacou awarded membership of the Law Society’s Children Panel appeared first on Ringrose Law.

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