MLP Law is one of the leading commercial law firms in the North West.
Based in the commercial heart of Altrincham, near Manchester, we are ideally placed for ease of access serving local, national and global clients from start ups, to large corporates. We also deliver a range of private client services, from family law to probate advice to individuals across the region.
We are a dynamic, entrepreneurial team and believe that our clients gain the best solutions from us. We are passionate about our proactivity, the quality of work that we produce and believe that our services should be affordable, therefore we are always clear and up front about our fees.
We also keep you updated every step of the way, so you’ll always be clear on the progress that’s being made.
As a commercial law firm we understand the business challenges that you face and how those can have an impact on your personal legal affairs.
We provide a best in class range of services and our experienced solicitors understand your issues. We do everything in our power to achieve successful results and we’re here to help you get on track and remain there.
The experienced solicitors here at MLP are happy to talk to you about any legal enquiry, whether you need advice on the sale of your business, shareholder agreements or simply need to sort out your will.
Please feel free to contact us on 0845 0738 445 and you will be put through to the department best suited to your needs. Alternatively email us on firstname.lastname@example.org and one of our legal team will contact you.
Manchester-based MLP Law, (formally Myers Lister Price) has appointed Theo Hoppen as head of family law. Theo has over nine years’ of family law experience, advising and representing professionals, business people and celebrities on a wide range of issues including cohabitation disputes, pre-nuptial agreements and children matters. He also has a keen interest in advising on financial settlements arising from divorce and helping clients to protect their wealth. Theo is relocating to the Altrincham area after joining MLP Law from Ward Hadaway in Leeds. He will be responsible for managing the family law division, and leading on plans for the team’s expansion. Theo prides himself on offering first-rate client care and support throughout what is often a very difficult time and will draw on his vast experience and expertise to achieve the very best results for his clients. Commenting on his new role, Theo ... Read More »
Altrincham-based MLP Solicitors has strengthened its business services division with the additions of Karen Bexley as Director in the Employment team and Emma Lewis as senior solicitor in the corporate commercial team. Employment law expert, Karen Bexley, moves to MLP Law from the role of Legal Director at Millbank Edge LLP. Prior to this she was an associate solicitor at DAC Beachcroft LLP for nine years. Karen has worked with a range of clients over the years from individuals through to larger corporates. Karen works closely with her clients as their trusted business adviser and is known for her commercial and practical advice. Emma Lewis joins the firm from Slater Heelis LLP where she has been advising owner managed businesses in all aspects of corporate and commercial law. She will provide advice within the business services division of MLP, helping businesses plan their business journey by getting ... Read More »
MLP Law (MLP), which is currently celebrating its 25th year, has announced a change in leadership, with Stephen Attree taking on the role of the firm’s managing director.
Stephen has led MLP’s Corporate and Commercial team since joining the firm in 2011 and has been instrumental in the direction of the firm, working alongside founding partner, Michael Lister, for the past three years.
Michael Lister becomes Chairman of the firm and will be working with other businesses in a non-executive capacity, focused on strategic business growth. 38- year old, Stephen Attree, has worked within Manchester’s business and legal community for 17 years and has been involved in high profile transactions such as the sale of Lakestar Media to McCann in 2012. His appointment in 2011 marked the beginning of the evolution of MLP to ... Read More »
There are a number of key areas that need to be considered when preparing a contract between a principal and an associate dentist. Stephen Attree, the managing director of MLP Law, shares his expertise on the issues involved in his latest e-book, Getting Your Dental Associate Contracts Right. Most dentists operate as associates by renting out an already established and fully equipped surgery. They will then pay a percentage of their fee income to the owner of the surgery – the principal. This arrangement is usually formalised through an associate agreement, and a well drafted agreement will protect the interests of both the associate and the principal. To download the e-book for free, please enter your email address into the form below.
A former hippy-turned-windfarm entrepreneur is being challenged in the courts by his ex-wife. Kathleen Wyatt is seeking a substantial payment from her ex-husband Dale Vince, some 22 years after they divorced. Wyatt claims her ex-husband left her destitute while his business grew to be worth an estimated £107m. The couple married in 1981 when they were New Age travellers and penniless – and divorced in 1992. In 1995, Vince founded Ecotricity, which is now one of the UK’s biggest green energy companies. Today, Vince lives in a £3m 18th century house called Rodborough Fort near Stroud, Gloucestershire and owns a football club. By contrast, his ex-wife says she is so poor that she has been travelling to court by bus and sleeping in a bus station. The Supreme Court, the UK’s highest court, is hearing the case. Theo Hoppen, MLP Law’s head of family law and ... Read More »
It’s that time of year again! Everyone is getting into the Christmas spirit and that long awaited office party is just around the corner – so how do you make sure it all goes off without a hitch? Understandably as an employer, you don’t want to risk being seen as the archetypal Scrooge by talking about disciplinary issues before anyone has even had as much as a mince pie. However, it is becoming increasingly important for employers to take steps to minimise the risk of a nasty New Year hangover in the form of an Employment Tribunal claim. Harassment and discrimination Most employers are aware that they can be held responsible for the conduct of their employees whilst they’re working for them. But most may not release that this can extend to a work party, even if this takes place aware from work. This ... Read More »
Succession and Planning in Family Businesses Stephen Attree, the managing director of MLP Law, has published an e-book on family business succession and planning. The book, entitled Succession and Planning in Family Businesses: The Options and Pitfalls, discusses the choices available to family business owners so that they can make more informed decisions about their business succession plans. By understanding the options and potential pitfalls, the transition plan is more likely to succeed. Stephen Attree is an accredited family business adviser and has many years of experience acting for owner-managed and family-run businesses. The e-book retails on Amazon at £8.20. To download it for free, please enter your email address into the form below.
Deciding to take on employees for the first time is a huge milestone for any business. Before taking this step it is important to make sure you are fully prepared. This will involve considering the following key issues: Recruit fairly: Discrimination law applies to potential and actual job applicants as well as to employees. Your recruitment processes therefore must not discriminate against anyone on the grounds of a “protected characteristic”, which includes sex, race, age and disability. This means that any vacancy advertisements or job descriptions must not discriminate against any particular group of people and your process of selecting one candidate over another must also not be discriminatory. This can be tricky where an aspect of the role appears to apply equally to everyone but has a disproportionate effect on certain groups of people (known as indirect discrimination). Employee rights: Employees acquire a number ... Read More »
All businesses experience good and bad times. A healthy cash flow is the key to a successful business. The late payment, or non-payment, of invoices can have a serious affect on the cash flow. When cash flow slows, businesses can fail. In the current economic climate, cash really is king! We have a 25 year track record of successfully recovering debts no matter how big or small.Why? Because we are experts in debt recovery who really care. Debt recovery on your own can waste valuable time and resources. It can also be very worrying and stressful when you are repeatedly fobbed off by unreasonable customers. We take that stress and hassle away by offering a fixed fee debt recovery service. We also add value by advising you on how to try to lower your debts in future by introducing steps to make your cash collection ... Read More »
As part of a series of weekly blogs our head of family law, Theo Hoppen, offers guidance on some frequently asked questions concerning divorce: 1.How much will it cost? In total about £1,230. This figure includes legal fees of £650 plus VAT and court fees of £455. If there are any issues regarding the finances or children then the costs are likely to be more. 2.How long will my divorce take? Usually about four to six months, however, if there are issues involving the finances or children it can often take between 6 to 12 months. 3.Where will the children live? Separating couples are usually able to agree with whom the children will live and how much time they will spend with the other parent. If parents are not able to agree then the court can assist and can make a child arrangements order which sets out with ... Read More »
The news channels and social media sites are saturated with the Employment Appeal Tribunal’s (EAT) decision that overtime should be taken into account when holiday pay is calculated. Once we get past the headlines (and people like me have now read the judgment), what does this ruling mean for businesses in practice? The following points of the decision are crucial in its practical application: that the ruling relates to “non-guaranteed overtime” as opposed to voluntary overtime. “Non- guaranteed overtime” means overtime which the employer is not obliged to offer but that the employee is contractually obliged to do if offered; the requirement to include overtime only applies to the first 4 weeks (including bank holidays) of holiday taken in each holiday year. The remaining 1.6 weeks’ holiday (as required by UK law) or any additional contractual holiday can be based on normal remuneration excluding ... Read More »
Now that same-sex couples can legally enter into a civil marriage, what do those with a civil partnership do? Well it’s good news. As of 10 December 2014, civil partnerships can be converted to a civil marriage at registry offices without the need for complicated formalities. Although there has been some confusion as to how this conversion is to happen, the Government Equalities Offices has now confirmed that a full, backdated marriage certificate will be issued to couples – not a ‘certificate of conversion’ as previously speculated. The marriage certificate will show the ‘when married’ date as the date the original civil partnership was formed and the date when the conversion took place. This is to minimise any confusion that may arise due to the ‘when married’ date being earlier than the date it became legal for same sex couples to marry. If ... Read More »
Cyber security seems to be very topical. Every day I seem to be reading about the risks we all face, personally and to our businesses, from cyber attackers. There are ways to protect your business and I would advise that all businesses should have cyber security on their agenda and I would advise that you follow the simple steps below so that your business is as prepared and protected as it can be. What is a cyber attack? A cyber attack is an assault by a third party via a computer against another computer or computer system, which is intended to compromise the integrity, availability or confidentiality of that computer or computer system. For example: A remote attack on a business’ IT systems or website. Attacks on information held in third-party systems (for example, the company bank account). Understanding the risks faced by the business Identify what ... Read More »
Thirty eight paintings by Sir Winston Churchill have been offered to the country in lieu of Inheritance Tax (IHT). Sir Winston’s daughter, Lady Soames, died in May this year. Most of the paintings are currently on public display at the family home at Chartwell in Kent, and Lady Soames requested in her Will that they should remain there indefinitely. To carry out her wishes, the family have offered the paintings to the nation under the ‘Acceptance in Lieu’ (AIL) scheme, rather than selling them to meet the IHT bill. This offer is now under consideration. Ordinarily, IHT is payable at the rate of 40% when the deceased person’s estate exceeds £325,000. However, the AIL scheme allows families to offer items of cultural or historical importance in payment of IHT. In order to be considered for the scheme, the item must be ‘pre-eminent’, meaning ... Read More »
MLP Law recently hosted the first in its series of Bigger Breakfast events, which covered the latest legal development in the ever changing world of employment law. The delegates in attendance participated in an insightful round table discussion, led by MLP’s Head of Employment Karen Bexley and Employment Solicitor Gareth Matthews on the new concept of Shared Parental Leave. The new right, which comes into full effect in April 2015 but elements of which come into force from 1 December 2014, allows two parents to share the maternity leave and pay which was previously only available to mothers. Delegates engaged in a lively debate about the commercial and practical impact of the new right on their businesses. They were able to get a head start on their peers, the overwhelming proportion of which haven’t yet considered how the right will impact on ... Read More »
If you are obviously close to retirement, a potential buyer for your business will sense your ‘deadline’ and their offer price will be lower to reflect this. So sell when you want to, not when you need to. It takes time to find the right buyer for your business, and when the sale is complete you may need to work as an advisor or on an earn-out for 1, 2 or 3 years. So factor that in to your exit timing plan. Many owner-managers approaching retirement stop replacing capital items and investing in the next technologies to future-proof their businesses. The buyer will factor these catch-up costs into their offer price. Sell when your business is at its best with plenty of growth – a buyer is more interested in future potential than your past performance. If you are losing interest, enthusiasm or commitment ... Read More »
At MLP Law LLP we are seeing an increase in our clients who are accessing alternative business funding, rather than more traditional sources of lending, such as bank, private equity and public funding/grants. By alternative business funding we mean thins such as Crowdfunding, Peer to Peer Lending, Invoice or Asset Finance or Pension-led funding (although there are more!) Each form of finance has its advantages and disadvantages and is important to consider all of them before making a decision on what works best for you and your business. For example, bank lending is of course a trusted source of finance and you can be comfortable with the knowledge that they won’t be seeking massive returns on their investment. However it has become harder and harder to obtain and there are more and more hoops to jump through along the way. Whereas, a benefit ... Read More »
The Inheritance and Trustees’ Powers Act 2014 came into force on the 1st October 2014. The legislation alters the Rules of Intestacy, which apply when someone dies without a valid Will. These Rules of Intestacy set out who is entitled to administer the estate, who will inherit, and how much each person will receive. The new rules increase the amount that the deceased person’s spouse / civil partner is entitled to when there are no children, as well as simplifying the distribution of the estate where there is a spouse or civil partner and children. The two main changes are: If the deceased person has a spouse or civil partner but no children, their partner will now inherit the whole of their estate. The previous position was that the spouse / civil partner was only entitled to £450,000, with the remainder of the ... Read More »
What has changed? From 1 October 2014 the law will change on parody comedy. The change has been brought about following a recent case in Belgium in relation to copyright infringement (Deckmyn and another v Vandersteen and others, Case C-201/13, 3 September 2014). The makers of parody pieces will no longer be in breach of copyright unless their work competes with the original or exposes the original work to being associated with a discriminatory message. What is a parody? The law is set out in the Copyright Directive (2001/29/EC) which though does not define ‘Parody,’ does state that the essential characteristics of parody are that it evokes an existing work while being noticeably different from it, and constitutes an expression of humour or mockery. The work does not need to display an original character of its own. The meaning and scope of the term ... Read More »
Autumn is here already, which means a new wave of employment law changes is upon us. We have set out below the key points you need to be aware of: National minimum wage: The national minimum wage rates for all workers have increased. For standard adult workers, the rise is from £6.31 per hour to £6.50 per hour. The increase comes during the political party conference season, which has seen the Labour Party pledge to introduce a minimum wage of £8 per hour by 2020 should they be elected. This can be a good time to make sure your contracts of employments are in place and up to date. To discuss your contracts with the MLP Law Employment Team, please feel free to get in touch by email on email@example.com or by telephone on 0161 926 9969. Time off to accompany partner to antenatal appointments: Employees ... Read More »
The CEO of an Oklahoma oil company is involved in a divorce that may result in the largest ever settlement. The husband, Harold Hamm, is the CEO and founder of Continental Resources, an oil company in which his 68% shareholding is valued at about $19 billion. He must be ruing the day he decided to marry without a pre-nuptial agreement as his wife, Sue Ann, is set to receive a half share of the $19 billion fortune. If they had signed one then it is very likely she would have received a far lower pay out. Whilst pre-nups in England will protect your assets on divorce it is also important to bear in mind that such agreements will also limit the effect a divorce can have on your company. Mr Hamm’s lawyers have complained of “the enormous expense and waste of corporate officer ... Read More »
It’s time for MLP’s quick round up of the key talking points in employment law for the week ending 5 September 2014. News Early conciliation statistics published: ACAS has published its first set of statistics since the early conciliation process became mandatory for most types of employment tribunal claims on 6 May 2014 The statistics show that between the period 6 April to 30 June 2014, 17,145 people used the service. During the first month of the service in April 2014, before its use became mandatory, around 1,000 notifications a week were received by ACAS. This increased to around 1,600 notifications a week after the new rules became mandatory. Around 11,000 cases both began and concluded early conciliation period during the period to which the statistics relate. Of these, 16.5% resulted in a successful settlement and a further 19% of employees told ACAS they would ... Read More »
A Monetary Penalty Notice is a notice requiring a data controller to pay a fine set by the Commissioner. The amount of the MPN determined by the Commissioner must not exceed £500,000. When can an MPN be issued? In order to issue an MPN the Commissioner must be satisfied that: The data controller (the person who decides the purposes for which and how the personal data can be processed) has seriously contravened the Data Protection Act 1998 or the Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations 2003; and The contravention was likely to cause substantial damage or distress, and either the contravention was deliberate; or the data controller knew or ought to have known that there was a risk that the contravention would occur, and that it would be likely to cause substantial damage or distress, but still failed to take reasonable steps to prevent it from happening. In ... Read More »
I’ve recently finished an E-book soon to be published on Family Business succession and planning. One of the key elements of the book is the importance of planning. Planning succession and managing the implementation are cornerstones of a successful transition of a business (any business) to new owners, and particularly so when we’re facing a transition to the next or new generation in a family business. Whether Tax or Business and family efficacy are the dominant motivators can have an important impact on the structure of any plan. Do we know our tax reliefs BPR (Business Property), and FICs (Family Investment Companies) from our FLPs (Family Limited Partnerships)? The family business shouldn’t need to (you’re busy enough running your business and worrying about handing it on), but your advisers certainly should. There are many examples of where a transition was not successful ... Read More »