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A Guide to Professional Indemnity Insurance

In today’s society many individuals and businesses may require Professional Indemnity (PI) Insurance; a policy designed to protect against claims arising out of professional negligence that provides cover for legal costs and expenses involved in defending a claim, as well as damages if your client has suffered a financial loss.

But do you know some of the key areas to consider when purchasing PI insurance to meet the often complex needs of your business? One of our insurance partners, Zurich, has written a guide to some of the important areas to consider, from policy limits to ensuring you are covered if you cease trading or retire. Find the full guide from Zurich here.

At Arlington we have a specialist PI team who will work with you to fully understand the needs of your business and who will negotiate with a range of insurers to obtain cover at a competitive price. Visit our Professional Indemnity Insurance product page for more details.

 

Countdown to the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) – Guidance for CRE Investors and Landlords

The countdown to MEES compliance has started and landlords need to plan ahead to reduce any void letting periods or exposure to financial penalties.

All landlords will potentially be affected by the MEES regulations, irrespective of the size and nature of their portfolios

Failure to comply with the regulations could have significant implications on business continuity as landlords will not only be prevented from granting new leases (including renewals), but could also face financial penalties with breaches being published in a public register.

For property owners, the regulations will require landlords to have a greater focus on the energy efficiency standards of a building to ensure that they remain lettable and the capital value is not affected.

For funders and investors, there will be a greater emphasis on borrowers actively managing their real estate portfolios to ensure compliance with the regulations to prevent a void in rental income or to mitigate any impact on market value.

Thanks to Ruth Gilbody of Arbnco (formerly known as CO2 Estates) for providing the full article which you can read here.

Continue reading “Countdown to the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) – Guidance for CRE Investors and Landlords”

Construction sector growth

Recent statistics suggest that the construction sector ended 2016 showing positive growth, with December expanding at the fastest rate for 9 months, this is in spite of increased cost pressures. See more here.

With potential increases in the amount of work available to building professionals, it’s more important than ever to not just ensure that you have Professional Indemnity Insurance in place but also the right level of cover to protect yourself and business from even the smallest mistake.

Here at Arlington we offer Professional Indemnity cover to meet the specific needs of Building Professionals – find out more about our cover and how we may be able to help you here .

Court decision on rates liabilities is welcome news for property owners and developers

This case was about works being undertaken to an office building in Sunderland which involved stripping the unit back to a shell prior to creating three new office suites.

The Ratepayer argued the property should be deleted from the rating list whilst the works to the unit were ongoing on the basis that the property was incapable of beneficial occupation. The Valuation Officer contended that despite the condition of the property, the works to put it back into repair were “economic” and therefore felt it should not be deleted.

Initially the Valuation Tribunal found for the Valuation Office and The Ratepayer (SJ & J Monk) appealed the decision to the Upper Tribunal (UT) who then decided in favour of the Ratepayer and deleted the assessment. The case was then subsequently appealed to the Court of Appeal who reversed the decision of the UT, which they found to be legally flawed, and found in favour of the Valuation Officer that the assessment should not be deleted.

The case was then appealed to The Supreme Court which unanimously allowed the ratepayer’s appeal and reversed the Court of Appeal decision. This new decision allows the ratings liability of a property under extensive refurbishment works to be reduced to £1.

This will be very welcome news to developers as the previous Court of Appeal decision was viewed to be a disincentive to development as it would add to project costs. However, those with ideas of exploiting this decision by removing certain features of the building e.g. plumbing, and claiming their premises are incapable of beneficial occupation should be aware that the Local Government Finance 1988 Act contains anti-avoidance powers.

A fuller summary of the decision by David Reade QC and Dominic Bayne, who appeared in the Supreme Court on behalf of the successful appellant is available here and the Supreme Court’s judgment is available here.