Legal Updates

ADC initiates new investigation into alleged dumping of steel reinforcing bar

The ADC has achieved the “ton” with the issue of ADN 2014/100 on Friday, 17 October 2014.

Click here to view the ADN.

The Investigation was initiated at the application of OneSteel. More…

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Court of Appeal – Proposed new regime for civil appeals and applications

On 9 September 2014, the Courts Legislation (Miscellaneous Amendments) Act 2014(Vic) (the Act) was assented and will come into effect on 10 November 2014.  The Act makes various amendments to the Supreme Court Act 1986 (Vic) and proposes a new regime for the Court of Appeal to hear civil appeals and applications.

The purpose of the Act is to further improve timeliness of the civil appeal process.  More…

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Immigration Act – Landlord’s Obligations

There have been concerns for some time that rogue residential landlords are letting their properties to illegal immigrants, who then evade deportation. These properties are often unsafe with no sanitation. With that in mind, new statutory provisions have been implemented that will fine landlords up to £3,000 if they do not check their tenants’ immigration status. British citizens, EEA and Swiss nationals and anyone who has indefinite leave to remain are fine. For everyone else, the landlord will have to carry out checks. Visitors with a time-limited visa (e.g. guest workers) will be allowed to rent for the duration of their visa but the landlord will need to follow up to make sure that the visa has been renewed and file a report to the Home Office if it has not.  More…

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SFO faces fresh attempt at NCA merger

This article was previously published in The Times on 9 October 2014.

After failing in her attempts to overhaul the Serious Fraud Office three years ago in the face of staunch opposition from the former attorney general, Dominic Grieve QC, and Justice Minister, Kenneth Clarke, Theresa May is now considering reviving her plans to dismantle the much maligned organisation. The SFO has received its fair share of bad publicity ranging from the ill-conceived Tchenguiz investigation to alleged secret payments to exit staff. More…

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McDonald Hopkins Government Strategies Advisory: This Week in Washington — October 17, 2014

The development of a pharmaceutical drug is a slow, deliberate process, and it can take years of back-and-forth between scientists and health officials before medicine makes it to the market.

But the worst Ebola outbreak in history has changed all that. The Food and Drug Administration is in crisis mode, and its process of reviewing applications for new drugs has been pushed into overdrive. The arrival of the deadly virus on American soil has created an unprecedented situation for the regulatory agency, especially when it comes to experimental drugs.

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The American Association of Advertising Agencies Has the 411 on the Latest Regulatory Issues

Brands and the agencies that help market them have full plates. Just keeping up with the way technology has changed, and how brands communicate with customers is, to say the least, a full time job. But, there are so many things that affect businesses, not the least of which is how government regulation can either help or hinder what we do.

That’s why organizations like the American Association of Advertising Agencies (4A’s) are so important. Among its many roles, the 4A’s advocates for advertising and marketing agencies and the other businesses it supports on a wide variety of issues. Some of the biggest items on its current docket:

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Customs proposes TCO amendments. Goodbye to the 25% local content requirement?

Under the banner of the Government’s deregulation agenda, Customs has now published notice of a proposed amendment to the TCO regime by removing the current requirement that there needs to be 25% local factory costs before a party can object to a proposed TCO or seek revocation of a TCO.

Presumably this would also allow Customs to object to initiate its own revocation on the same basis. More…

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Supreme Court Rules that Iranian Government Cannot be Sued in Canada for Zahra Kazemi’s Torture and Death


The Supreme Court of Canada recently released a decision -Kazemi Estate v. Islamic Republic of Iran 2014 SCC62 - that concluded that foreign states and their functionaries cannot be sued in Canada for acts of torture committed abroad.  The Court held that the State Immunity Act (“SIA”) in its present form, does not provide for an exception to foreign state immunity from civil suits alleging acts of torture occurring outside Canada.    
 
As the Court commented, the facts of this case are horrific.  Zahra Kazemi, a Canadian citizen, visited Iran in 2003 as a freelance photographer and journalist.  In June of 2003, Ms. Kazemi attempted to take photographs of individuals protesting against the arrest and detention of their family members outside the Evin Prison in Tehran.  Ms. Kazemi was ordered arrested and detained by Saeed Mortazavi, Tehran’s Chief Public Prosecutor. 
 
During her time in custody, Ms. Kazemi was not permitted to contact counsel, the Canadian Embassy, or her family.  She was interrogated by Iranian authorities.  She was beaten.  She was sexually assaulted.  She was tortured. 
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Extension in the Period Parents Are Able to Take Off Work

Parental leave, which is for employees to be allowed time off work to further their child’s welfare, can presently be taken only up to the child’s fifth birthday. However, beginning in April 2015, the age limit will increase to any child under the age of 18 years.

If an employee has completed one year’s service with an employer then they are entitled to 18 weeks unpaid parental leave for each child born or adopted. Presently, employees can take this leave at any point up until the child’s fifth birthday or until five years after the child is placed in their care after adoption. Additionally, if the child has disabilities, they can take a period of 18 weeks off until the child’s 18 birthday.

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My next car will be….

Recently, I have been thinking that my next car will be an electric car. There are new electric car models coming onto the market each week (ranging from the Kia Soul EV to the $145,000 BMW i8).

But I might be wrong. Maybe my next car will be driverless. Google has developed a driverless car. Audi tested an unmanned car at speeds as fast as 305kmh today.  Elon Musk, founder of Tesla, has said that there will be truly “autonomous” driving by 2023, where the driver could literally get in the car, go to sleep and wake up at their destination.

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