Nothing to do with money laundering
"I know also that there has been a law since November 2009 that cash cant be paid in against a credit card bill (cash has to be paid into a bank account and payment then drawn against that account in order to pay the credit card). This is for money laundering prevention as cash is not traceable."
This has nothing whatsoever to do with money laudering but is a consequence of the payment services regulations which require cash payments in to a personal account (of any sort, including credit card accounts) at the bank holding the account to be credited to the account on the day they are paid in. Some banks have inadequate systems for their credit card operations that do not allow this to happen. You can easily avoid the problem by paying the credit card bill in cash at a different bank to that of the card issuer. However the payment will take time to reach the credit card account and you might be charged by the bank where you pay in if you are not a customer.
The downside of an ISAOne thing that no one has mentioned is that if you ever get into a situation where you need to claim a means-tested benefit (and if you think it will never happen to you, you need to think again several times) your ISA will be treated as available capital and your benefit entitlement will be cut accordingly.
In the worst case you could end up with very little left in your ISA as you will have had to use what was there to live on.
Something not quite rightI advise people on employment law.
There seems to be something amiss in the situation described. If this person's contract says 6 months notice they have a contractual right to paid notice although, depending on the exact wording of the contract, that may be less than 6 months full pay if they find another job before the 6 months is up. In addition to this they must be paid for holiday accrued but not taken.
Any redundancy payment is on top of the above. To qualify for a statutory redundancy payment you must have been continuously employed for at least 2 years, after which you are entitled to a payment of one week's pay (up to £250) per complete year of employment (up to 20 years). You get more if you are over 42 years old and less if you were under 22 during the employment period. Many employers pay more than this statutory minimum and/or do not apply the 2-year qualifying period.
As far as tax is concerned, and not being an accountant or other kind of tax expert, I advise my clients that a contractual payment may be taxable but any non-contractual redundancy payment is tax free up to £30,000.
Not a binding statementThe statement you refer to appears to be describing government policy. As such it is always subject to change and cannot be though of as a commitment of any sort. Generally speaking, policy is only legally significant when realised through legislation.
Although I only vaguely recall the case involving the "ship" I seem to recall that it involved the interpretation of a statute - a completely different kind of animal to a policy statement.
Should not be a problemIn general old application software should work fine on newer versions of operating systems.
I have come across a few exceptions to this with very old software. The problems fall into one of two categories. The first are things that don't install themselves properly on the newer operating system - in all the cases I found it is possible to bypass the problem. The second are programs that simply will not work - these are rare but in these cases you have no choice to upgrade.
The reverse scenario - running new applications on an old operating system - is the one more likely to not work. New applications often takes advantage of new features in new versions of operating systems so will not work (or not work properly) with old operating systems.
Housing Benefit should not cause problemsNormally a Housing Benefit claimant who is a private tenant will be paid the benefit and they will pay their rent in the normal way. There are a few exceptions to this - the main one being if the tenant is in arrears when they apply for HB.
If you have some sort of written agreement with your tenant detailing the rent to be paid and you give receipts for rent paid it's often possible for them to claim and receive HB without the landlord knowing about it.
By the way, the DSS doesn't even exist these days and in any case it's several years since responsibility for HB was transferred from the DSS (as it was then) to local authorities.
You can't contract out
Of course you can have a contract that states what you are happy with but to the extent that it provides less than the statutory provision it's void. (i.e. you can't contract out of the statutory provision.) That applies to many matters - not just holiday pay.
I think that the safest approach to overtime would be to simply calculate holiday pay on the basis of average pay over the previous 12 weeks including all overtime unless you can show that the overtime was a clear one-off event and the employee was not obliged to work it.
The problem with this judgment (and several others) is that they only address specific circumstances. Until a case comes along that deals with the unanswered points - such as what about overtime that the employee does not have to work when offered - the safest route is for employers to include pretty much everything in the holiday pay calculation.
There's a useful article here: http://www.cloisters.com/news/holiday-pay-judgment-what-it-means-for-you
It was not really about the contract
You are starting from the mistaken belief that holiday pay only depends on the contract. The contract may deal with holiday pay but there is a minimum level set by the Working Time Regulations (WTR) and this case was about how that minimum should be arrived at. The WTR implement the Working Time Directive (WTD) and it says practically nothing about how holiday pay should be computed - just that the entitlement is a minimum of 4 weeks per year and the employer can't "buy out" holiday except on termination of employment. The WTR chose to adopt the Employment Rights Act 1996 definition of "a week's pay" as the amount to be paid. The essence of that (including its related case law) is that a week's pay comprises basic pay plus overtime that both the employer is obliged to provide and the employee is obliged to work. The case was about whether overtime the employer was not obliged to provide and, in one of the cases, various allowances had to be included in the holiday pay computation.
The Court referred to various ECJ rulings and the fundamental principle behind them is that there should be no financial disincentive to taking holiday. In essence this means that holiday pay should not be less than a typical working week's pay. The upshot is the the minimum level of holiday pay has to include overtime (at least where it must be worked if offered) and some other payments (a travelling time allowance was part of one of the appeals) as well as commission payments (from one of the previous ECJ cases).
It's easy to dismiss those who cover leavePhillip Nuttgens is missing a simple legal point...
If you take on someone to cover maternity leave the contract will automatically end when the employee on maternity leave returns. You have to say at the outset they job is to cover maternity leave but that's all. It is a task contract - to cover the maternity leave. The same would apply to adoption leave or (if they see the light of day) the proposed paternity leave.
Even if you do not set up the contract as a task contract you can dismiss someone employed for less than 12 months very much more easily than one who has been employed longer and thereby acquired the right not to be unfairly dismissed. Even if that were not the case I would consider a dismissal would be almost bound to be considered fair for "some other substantial reason".
Redundancy is irrelevant because statutory redundancy rights do not start until someone has been employed 2 years.