Businesses are keen to get back to pre-pandemic trading conditions and full capacity in the workplace, whilst also facing the twin challenge of hyperinflation, rising fuel, energy prices and business costs. At the same time, businesses are concerned about their legal responsibilities and liabilities in light of COVID-19 and the removal in England of the working safely guidance for workplaces.
In an interesting recent case, the Court of Appeal dismissed a claim by an ex-employee against her former employer for misuse of private information and breach of confidence in relation to personal emails that she sent from a business email account during her employment.
A recent case has provided an excellent reminder that anyone bringing a court claim for payments of a sum or sums of money needs to provide adequate evidence of how much is owed, for what, and how it became due. Failure to do this can prove fatal to any claim. In this case a High Court judge dismissed the claimant’s case for just this reason.
The government had, during the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic, introduced a number of temporary measures to assist businesses. The remaining temporary insolvency measures applied under the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Act 2020 (CIGA 2020) expired on 31 March 2022. This means that statutory demands and petitions can again be issued against limited company debtors where the sum is greater than £750, is not in dispute, and is not a protected rent debt.
The Commercial Rent (Coronavirus) Act 2022 came into force on 24 March 2022. It is intended to support landlords and tenants in resolving disputes relating to commercial rent arrears that accrued while businesses were forced, by law, to close during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Act ringfences rent debts built up as a result of mandated business closures and introduces a new binding arbitration process to resolve disputes relating to those protected rent debts, where landlords and tenants have not been able to reach agreement.