New Alcohol Code to be Introduced this Year

29th January 2010
New Alcohol Code to be Introduced this Year image

New Alcohol Code to be Introduced

New Alcohol Code to be Introduced this Year to Call Time on Binge Drinking Culture

Mandatory Licensing Conditions designed to reduce binge drinking culture in England and Wales will come into force later this year according to a recent Government announcement.

Alan Johnson, the Home Secretary, is still to confirm the final details of the Code.  However it is designed to tackle drink related crime and disorder that is estimated to cost the United Kingdom between £8 billion and £13 billion per year.

Pub owners who breach the Code could face extra conditions, the risk of losing their licence as well as fines of up to £20,000 and even 6 months in prison.

The new mandatory conditions will include the following:-

  • A ban on ‘irresponsible’ promotions such as “all you can drink for £10”, woman drink for free deals, speed drinking competitions and “Dentist’s Chairs”.
  • Ensuring that free tap water is available.
  • Ensuring that all those who sell alcohol check the identity of anyone who looks under 18.
  • Ensuring that establishments make available a choice between a single and double measure of spirits and a small and large glass of wine.

However a ban on the bulk discounting of alcohol by shops and supermarkets that led to Police complaints that lager is being sold more cheaply than water has been dropped from the Code.  The Government did admit that there were issues (around rock bottom cheap alcohol) but has rules out a compulsory minimum pricing in England and Wales by stating “it would not at this stage be sensible”.

It is believed that the Code is to be introduced in two stages during this year.  The first stage will come into effect on 6th April and will cover the ban on promotions, drinking games and the provision of free tap water.  The second stage will come into effect on 1st October, and will cover issues relating to smaller measures and age checks.

Licensing Partner Daven Naghen commented as follows:-

“For many this Code is considered long overdue.  Licensees should make sure that they are fully aware of the new codes as and when they come into force.  If Licensees do not comply with the Code, as well as running the risk of losing their Licence they could also face criminal prosecution (and a possible large fine and/or jail sentence).”

For further details on the new Alcohol Code please log on to our website for updates.


How Banks are Cashing in on Wills image

How Banks are Cashing in on Wills

Recent headlines have reported how banks are now cashing in on Wills.

During the 1990s and early 2000s, banks offered customers low cost Wills (or sometimes even free Wills) but the small print allowed the bank to charge extortionate rates to act as Executors. It is reported that banks are expecting billions of pounds of revenue from their Will writing services and administering estates and in some cases their fees have been over £12,000 to administer an estate as they look to charge a fixed fee PLUS a percentage of the deceased’s wealth.

If you or a loved one has made a Will through a bank we would urge you to check who you have appointed as Executors and check any small print which you may have signed. If you are unsure then please speak with one of our lawyers in the Wills and Probate team who can look at your existing Will with you. It may be appropriate to make a new Will which revokes any previous Will you have made which could save your family thousands of pounds when your estate needs to be administered.

In the majority of cases, when someone has passed away we can provide the family with a quote of how much the legal fees will be so that there are no nasty surprises once the administration is complete.

Read More

Testimonials

Gemma Mayer LLB

"I would highly recommend Maples Solicitors, especially Gemma Mayer, for any conveyancing work. The level of support and professionalism was excellent at all times. I also felt if I needed to ask or clarify anything that it was not an issue. Buying and selling a house is stressful enough, but Gemma helped me through it step by step."

Anita Toal LLB BA

"I think you are brilliant. You can use my comments above. You are efficient, friendly and quite clearly very good at what you do. Mainly you don’t leave people hanging around too long for." "So easy to talk to her and she understood what I wanted. She put me at ease and I cant thank her enough"

Daven Naghen LLB

"Daven provided an excellent service, from attending the first interview with me to the final court appearance. He filled me full of confidence that he would defend me to which he did and come out with an excellent outcome in view of my position that I had put myself in."

Faye Blair LLB

Faye was excellent, sensitive and acted very well to the time constraints we faced. Great service and dealt with compassion at such sad times made the process less painful very professional.

Jamie Dobbs ACILEx

Over the last forty years I have cause to deal with many law firms both in a personal and professional capacity, including some ‘top’ London Companies. In all of those dealings I have never found anyone as proactive and so willing to offer help and advice as Jamie Dobbs. During the last two years Jamie guided my parents through the completion of Lasting Powers of Attorney. Helped myself with the use of the LPA and recently dealing with Probate and Estate Administration following their death.

Mike Pepper MA

Mike Pepper gave us excellent advice. He was always most helpful and accommodating giving lucid explanations every step of the way. Thank you Mike.

Claire Smith FCILEx

Claire Smith has been amazing in every way. I highly recommend her and I am so grateful for all her help. She’s professional on all levels, reliable, extremely organised and I will be recommending her to everyone. I’m very lucky to have had her representing me and I can’t thank her enough. She is an asset to Maples. Thanks so much Claire!