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Feb
2024
Trainee Perspectives: Deciding on a Law Firm

Trainee Solicitor, Fiona Sturges discusses what made her choose to apply for a training contract as Thompson Smith and Puxon. One of the questions we are asked a lot as trainees is “why did we pick Thompson Smith and Puxon (TSP)?” The simple answer for me is they offered me a training contract. Don’t get me wrong, I knew by the end of the assessment centre that this is where I wanted to be. I was given the chance to meet some of the staff here and get a feel for the values of the firm, and I know I made the correct decision in accepting the offer. But, as many of you currently trying to enter this profession know, getting the offer is hard enough and sometimes you do not have the opportunity to be picky. When I was at university, being told how to apply for law firms, one piece of advice that always stuck out to me was don’t make 100 applications as you’re unlikely to hear back from one. Spend a long time on five, and you are much more likely to hear back from two.  As such, my pickiness came in much earlier – at
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Feb
2024
A Quick Guide to Property Searches

Richard Broadhead, Head of Residential Property at Thompson Smith and Puxon, gives an overview of what residential property searches cover and why they are so crucial. Buying a property is likely to be the biggest financial decision that you will make in your lifetime. Most people wouldn’t buy a car or a household appliance without doing some research, reading reviews, or asking for opinions. Undertaking property searches will tell you a good deal of important information that you need to know in order to make an informed decision. Property searches are carried out before you exchange contracts. It is in your best interest to know exactly what you are buying and if there are any underlying concerns. If you are using a mortgage to support your purchase, your mortgage lender will require certain searches to be carried out in return for them securing the debt against the property. There are usually 3 main searches that are carried out when purchasing a property. Types of Property Search In addition to the standard searches, there are other specialist searches that can be carried out, either at your request or by recommendation from your Solicitor or Surveyor. These are usually if you are
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Feb
2024
Protecting Your Business: The Impact of the Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Act 2023

The Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Act 2023 introduces a wide range of reforms to improve the accessibility and transparency of corporate information with Companies House. A key focus under the Act, is to reduce economic crime by broadening identity verification requirements for new and existing company directors and beneficial owners.  Having received Royal assent in October 2023, these reforms will be coming into force in stages commencing on the 4 March 2024, with others likely to take effect later in 2024 and 2025. Some of the key changes relevant to UK companies include: Role of Companies House The role of Companies House will change from being a passive recipient to an active gatekeeper of company information. It will have new powers and objectives to improve the overall accuracy of information on the register, with the new powers to request information and supporting evidence, query inconsistencies, reject filings, require that information is filed digitally, remove or correct published filings and impose further fines and criminal sanctions. Companies House fees will be increased to fund its new functions. A failure to comply with a formal query for information from Companies House will be a criminal offence punishable by a fine or
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Feb
2024
Thompson Smith and Puxon Celebrate New Director Appointment

Leading Essex law firm, Thompson Smith and Puxon are delighted to welcome specialist Corporate and Commercial Solicitor, Caroline Nicholls. With a rich background in corporate and commercial law, Caroline brings a wealth of experience and expertise to the firm, further strengthening the shared commitment to delivering exceptional, forward-thinking legal services to clients. Caroline qualified as a Solicitor in 2006, having trained at a multinational law firm in London. She went on to specialise in corporate law where she has built up experience advising on a wide range of corporate transactions including acquisitions, disposals, management buy-outs, fundraisings and reorganisations. Her experience covers a variety of sectors; however, she has a particular interest in advising companies in the software, property, energy, sports and hospitality sectors. Caroline returns to Thompson Smith and Puxon, having worked for the firm as a Senior Associate for 4 years between 2015-2019. Thompson Smith and Puxon is going through a period of strategic growth, as they make key appointments to ensure that each legal department has the expertise and specialist knowledge required to keep up with the increased demand for high-level legal guidance. Commenting on the senior appointment of Caroline Nicholls, Chief Executive Officer, Sean Stuttaford said: “We
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Feb
2024
Do You Need a Solicitor for a Re-Mortgage?

Richard Broadhead, Head of Residential Property at Thompson Smith and Puxon, explains when a Solicitor is and isn’t required for a property remortgage… There are a number of reasons why someone may consider remortgaging their property. This could include switching between a variable and fixed rate, switching providers, changing the length of your mortgage terms, to borrow against your property, or remortgaging due to a separation or change in family circumstances. If you are remortgaging with your current mortgage provider, simply because you have come to the end of your fixed term, then you do not need to have a Solicitor, because all the details that the Land Registry hold will remain unchanged. However, if you are changing mortgage providers, to secure a better deal, for example, then you will need to appoint a Solicitor to manage the legal aspects and ensure that the new mortgage is registered against the legal title. There are several steps that your conveyancer will work through when remortgaging a property. This includes carrying out ID and anti-money laundering checks, reviewing the existing mortgage, checking terms, conducting property searches, arranging the signing of the new mortgage deed, holding and managing the transfer of funds on
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