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Hundreds of commercial properties “sitting targets” for waste criminals

It a well known fact that industrial units have always been targeted by waste criminals, leaving premises full of waste, often structurally damaged and with a costly clean-up bill.

Now investigations by the Environment Agency have revealed that ‘baled waste crime’ is on the increase. The waste is often plastic, builders, commercial or household rubbish that cannot be recycled and which has no monetary value.

Click here to read the full press release from the EA on this subject.

What are the risks of waste and how can you prevent yourself from becoming a waste crime victim?

There are several risks to property owners if waste ends up being illegally dumped on your land or premises.

  • Financial: waste illegally dumped will have to be removed to a permitted waste site. This inevitably falls to the property owner and the costs can be high.
  • Reputational: illegal waste dumping can result in considerable local and national media attention. These sorts of activities can damage reputations.
  • Enforcement: anyone involved in the illegal keeping, treatment and disposal of controlled waste commits an offence, in some cases even if it is done unwittingly. The Environment Agency can serve notice on property owners to clean up any waste left on their land if not correctly permitted.

Steps to take to protect yourself

Ensure you understand what your tenants business is:

  1. Ask if your tenant is involved in waste activities on your land
  2. Check if they have the necessary authorisations in place to carry out the activity, including planning permissions
  3. Use the Public Register to check your tenant has a current permit or carrier/broker registration: www.gov.uk/guidance/access-the-public-register-for-environmental-information
  4. Make sure you understand the difference between a site that is permitted by the  Environment Agency and one that is register exempt.
  5. Familiarise yourself with the relevant legislation and the risks posed to you if a site doesn’t meet the conditions of their permit or the terms of their exemption. An operator who registers an exemption yet fails to comply with the conditions set out in that exemption is carrying out an illegal activity.

Carry out rigorous checks on prospective new tenants:

  1. Make sure you secure adequate identification documents and a down payment from a traceable bank account.
  2. Use freely available information such as Companies House Beta. https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/
  3. If you are renting to a newly formed company, make sure you meet and initially deal with the Company Director.
  4. Investigate the status of the new company’s finances to ensure they are strong.
  5. Check if the new company has a website and look to see if contact details match those you have been given.
  6. Ensure you know what business they intend to carry out in your unit and that is appropriate for the unit size. Check their business model make sense. Ask for examples or references for work done elsewhere.
  7. Be cautious if your prospective new tenants arrive on foot and not in a vehicle.
  8. Make sure you check out the details of any witness to the lease agreements, to be sure they are plausible and traceable.

Check that tenants are operating properly by carrying out periodic inspections and audits. Any of the following could indicate they are not operating the business they said:

  1. More lorry movements that you would expect for their business
  2. Activities on site at strange hours of the day and night
  3. Evidence of unusual odours and/or pests
  4. Complaints from adjacent tenants about their new neighbours.

Share information on poor practice and suspected wrong-doing:

  1. The Environment Agency are looking for you to share information with a view to building effective partnerships, work together more efficiently and make earlier, more targeted interventions.
  2. You can contact the Environment Agency incident hotline 24/7 on 0800 807060.
  3. Or send information anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or online at www.crimestoppers-uk.org.
  4. The reports they receive through Crimestoppers help them to identify companies that are illegally operating or exporting waste illegally.

What if it happens to you?

Many property owners policies contain an element of cover for Fly Tipping to pay for the costs in clearing and removing any property illegally deposited so if you do have an occurrence please contact us so we can notify your insurer.

Arlington Charity Cycle Ride to Yemen

We are in Yemen!!

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We are pleased to alert you that we have completed our 8,105 km virtual cycle ride to Yemen, which we have completed with a day still in hand.

Well done to everybody who participated. It is a great achievement for a great cause and hopefully you all had as much fun as we did! It was a pleasure being teammates with you all.

Total Distance Covered : 5289.5 Miles / 8512.7 km

This cycle was to raise funds and awareness for Save the Children’s Yemen Crisis Appeal. The mission involved teams using static spin bikes to race to the finish line in 31 days or less.

If you are interested in finding out more or donating, please visit our JustGiving page; https://lnkd.in/d6VqM6K

Any donations would be much appreciated.

Arlington cycle to Yemen

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‘Ready, Steady …..Go!’

Arlington Insurance Services is supporting Team APAM with an 8,105km virtual cycle challenge during the month of May.

This is to raise funds and awareness for Save the Children’s Yemen Crisis Appeal. This mission involves teams using static spin bikes to race to the finish line in 31 days or less.

To keep up to date with how our journey is going please follow our progress at; https://lnkd.in/dNRsbvy

If you are interested in finding out more or donating, please visit our JustGiving page; https://lnkd.in/d6VqM6K

Any donations would be much appreciated.

CYBER INSIGHTS

Nearly a third of UK businesses have experienced security breaches or attacks in the past year but despite this the research shows that only around 30% of medium-sized firms now have cyber insurance and the overall proportion of businesses remains relatively low at 11%.

Whilst many of the cyber incidents that are publicised involve large companies, hackers now recognise that often smaller businesses present an easy target. Over a third of targeted attacks are aimed at businesses with less than 250 employees, many of which don’t have the resources available to manage the impact of an attack. The effects of these attacks can be many and varied but mainly result in:

  • Financial costs of your own, or from third parties, in dealing with lost data
  • Legal and Regulatory implications for breach notifications
  • Damage to tangible and intangible assets
  • Loss of reputation and customers in the event of a security breach

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has recently published a useful document bringing together industry insights on cyber resilience. Since 2017, the FCA has brought together over 175 firms across different financial sectors to share information and ideas from their cyber experiences and they run these Cyber Coordination Groups (CCGs) with industry to help improve cyber security practices amongst members of the CCGs and their sectors discussing and sharing practices in the following areas: Governance, Identification, Protection, Detection, Situational Awareness, Response and Recovery, and Testing.

This is in the hope that the practices and experience of the groups help those firms not already involved when considering where to prioritise their efforts in increasing cyber resilience.

To read the FCA “Cyber security – industry insights” publication click here.

You will note that many of the insights in the publication refer to advice and guidance from the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) and they have produced a Small Business Guide which is worth looking at as it shows how to improve cyber security within your organisation – quickly, easily and at low cost by following the five quick and easy steps outlined below which could save time, money and even your business’ reputation.

  • Protecting your organisation from malware – 5 free and easy-to-implement tips that can help prevent malware damaging your organisation.
  • Backing up your data – 5 things to consider when backing up your data.
  • Avoiding phishing attacks – Steps to help you identify the most common phishing attacks.
  • Keeping your smartphones (and tablets) safe – 5 quick tips that can help keep your mobile devices (and the information stored on them) secure.
  • Using passwords to protect your data – 5 things to keep in mind when using passwords.

To read the NCSC Small Business Guide click here.

While risk management will help to prevent a cyber-attack, even the best security does not mean you will not one day experience an incident. In the event that an incident does occur, cyber insurance provides a valuable safety net and risk aware businesses are increasingly recognising the vital role that Cyber Liability mitigation and insurance products play as par of an effective risk management strategy.

Cyber-attacks are widely recognised as one of the greatest risks faced by businesses and with premiums these days starting at very reasonable levels we would encourage all firms that are serious about risk management to seriously consider purchasing a good quality cyber policy.

Our insurance solutions will give you 24 hour 7 days a week access to immediate support, guidance and risk mitigation just when you need it.

If you would like to find out more about how you can protect your business with cyber insurance, please give Andy Wright or Tony Housden a call on 0207 292 6011 or 0207 292 6018, or, email us at andy@arlingtoninsuranceservices.com, or, tony@arlingtoninsuranceservices.com

Legal Indemnity Insurance

What is legal indemnity insurance?

For some years now legal indemnity insurance has been widely used in the conveyancing market. Figures show that about one in five residential property transactions result in its use and in commercial property transactions legal indemnity insurance is often vital to assist the developer in allowing them to obtain funding in order to proceed with the project.
Indemnity insurance offers an efficient and in most cases a relatively straightforward and cost effective solution.

What can be covered?

Indemnity insurance can cover a wide range of issues and is a simple and efficient solution to a variety of title defects, providing cover to the value of property investment. It is important to remember that a claim made against a legal indemnity policy may not result in the insured defect being rectified but rather it may result in a payment of money to a property owner to compensate them for losses sustained as a result of the defect.

What policies are available?

There are many types of risk that can be covered and almost all legal defects can be insured against depending on the circumstances. Some common examples of policies are restrictive covenants, mines and minerals, lack of planning permission or building regulations approval, missing easements, good leasehold title, absent/insolvent landlord and search indemnity to name but a few.

For some examples of risk solutions we have provided click here.

When might changes to the policy be needed?

Most legal indemnity policies last indefinitely until the risk they cover has been discharged so it is important to ensure that the cover remains appropriate. The cover is a defined limit of indemnity which will normally represent the current market value of a house or the gross development value of a development site so should an increased limit be required the policy will need to be changed to reflect this. Also an important consideration is the definition of Insured Use in the policy. For example post-planning cover for a development is often tied to a specific planning consent so if planning consent is revised or varied compared to the original planning consent you will need to get the policy amended.

The future

There is no doubt Legal indemnity insurance has made the conveyancing process faster and more efficient and has also taken some of the exposure away from property lawyers. It is likely that this trend will continue and that indemnity insurance will still be seen as the ideal solution in many cases.

What we do

At Arlington our team is made up of highly experienced professionals and a reputation that is built on delivering a first-class service and specialist expertise. We offer a fully independent broking service and can quickly arrange quotes on your behalf from a number of different markets which will save you time and cost.

Need a quote?

If you are a solicitor or conveyancer we would be delighted to hear from you and our principle points of contact for Legal Indemnities are:

Tony Housden on 020 7292 6018 or tony@arlingtoninsuranceservices.com

Paul Stoner on 020 7292 6012or paul@arlingtoninsuranceservices.com