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Guest post outlining 10 things for new shop owners should take into consideration.

With the current state of the British high street one of abject decline, is it really the right time to buck the trend and open a new shop? Well, actually, there’s never been a better time to do exactly that. The focus is now shifting on to how to rejuvenate Britain’s high streets and bring new life back into them, so the opportunities for low rents, prime locations and start-up packages from the banks are all there to be grabbed firmly by anyone with an entrepreneurial spirit and a great idea.

But if you’re about to set up shop on the high street, there are a few things you need to take into consideration before you throw open the doors and invite the masses in:

#1 – What do you bring to the table?

The way we shop has changed dramatically in the last 20 years, so any high street store needs to have a USP that will grab the attention of even the most reticent high street shopper. Make sure you bring something new and exciting to the table, and are not just a carbon copy of a rival shopping experience that’s already well established.

#2 – Supplementing in-store with online

The high street shops that are succeeding are the ones that are literally ‘covering all the bases’ by having a strong online presence too. Remember to ensure that your branding is tied in across every platform, both in the real world and online.

#3 – Long lease or pop-up?

The type of lease you go for will entirely depend on your business plan. A long-term plan needs a stable base to build customer loyalty, whereas pop-up shops are great for dash-for-cash marketing ideas, especially seasonal ones.

#4 – Get your paperwork in order

Even pop-up shops need to be registered as a business, so no matter what your plan, check with your legal representative that every piece of paperwork is in order. Business registration, shop insurance, trading licences and ensuring you conform to H&S legislation should all be checked by a legal professional before you open the doors.

#5 – Insurance

It’s the dullest topic in the world, but it’s also essential if you’re opening a business to the public. Shops insurance packages that include public liability will cover you and your stock, as well as protecting you against claims made by the public.

#6 – Your vital support team

You need three key external partners when you set up in business – your insurance broker, your accountant and your legal representative. Make sure you have this vital support team in place before going into business so that you can focus your efforts on driving the business forward.

#7 – Legal cover

Shops insurance will cover just about every eventuality, from accidents suffered by the public whilst on your premises to interruption of business due to fire damage, for example. But you will also need to ensure that you have the right employer’s insurance if you have other people working for you so that you comply with employment law. This is a complex aspect of the law, so again if you’re going to be hiring (and even firing) then you’ll need a legal representative who’s well versed in employment law to make sure you stick to the rules.

#8 – Who are your rivals?

Once the legal and insurance stuff is sorted out, it’s time to look at on-the-ground considerations. Before you set up, check that you’re not in direct competition with existing operations or rival companies that already have a loyal customer base. It will be hard to draw those customers over to your shop unless you have a pretty impressive USP.

#9 – Building the brand

It’s actually easier to build a brand online than it is to develop a strong customer base in the ‘real’ world. Most high street shops rely on passing trade, so ensuring you’re in a prime location to attract that trade is key. But you will also need to develop an inclusive marketing strategy that involves every aspect of your business, from online sales to advertising campaigns.

#10 – Have a plan

You’ll be hard pushed to get a business loan without a comprehensive and very detailed 5-year business plan. But even if you don’t need to apply for a loan from the bank, still have that plan. It helps to have a roadmap of your ambitions, aspirations and developmental process so that your business has a sustainable growth structure for the foreseeable future.

Guest post regarding Junior ISAs and IHT.

Junior ISAs are a tax efficient way of saving. Neither donors to a JISA or the holder have to pay tax on interest earned.

Although the interest earned by a JISA is not subject to income tax, there may still be issues with the Inland Revenue. This is because of inheritance tax.

A promised rise in the threshold for inheritance tax has not happened. This means that many more estates will be liable to duties than would have been the case otherwise. Even payments into a Junior ISA made before death could be subject to a levy.


One of the ways in which it is common to plan for inheritance tax is by giving gifts while still alive that are not subject to taxation. There is an annual allowance of £3000 that can be given away without consequences from tax, and a JISA can be a suitable product to pay it into.

Anybody can pay into a Junior ISA, not just the parents of the child that it is in the name of. This means that grandparents and other relatives can pay into a JISA.

Seven Year Rule

Although there are annual allowances for gifts that are not subject to inheritance tax, any gift can potentially be exempt, as long as the giver lives for a further seven years. If however the giver does die in in this period a chain of events is set into motion.

The first thing that happens is that the tax authorities will have to take a look at the gift, known technically as a ‘Potentially Exempt Transfer’ (PET), along with the history of giving since and in the seven years prior to see whether inheritance tax is due.

If inheritance tax falls due on a PET it will have to be paid by the recipient of the gift. If the giver has died within three years of the gift then this will be at the full rate. For every year after the first three the tax liability is reduced by 20%, which means that if a donor passes on between six and the seven year limit there will be a discount of 80% in the amount of tax due.

Other considerations

It is important to remember that the money put into a Junior ISA then belongs entirely to the child. When that child turns eighteen they then have full control of that money, and can do absolutely whatever they want with it.

Ultimately the freeze in the inheritance tax threshold, along with the inexorable rise of property prices means that many more people will come to be subject to tax on their estates. Getting into the habit of giving early is for many going to be a good strategy, and a Junior ISA has the potential to be a substantial nest egg.

Pamela Chimbonda writes in association with Alliance Trust Savings.

The laws of the U.S. and the U.K. are similar in many ways, but there are important differences in their employment laws. If you are an American planning to work in the U.K., or vice versa, you should be aware of those differences which may be important to your circumstances and your employment relationship. This article will summarize four.

At-Will Employment

Subject to exceptions, U.S. law recognizes the doctrine of “at-will” employment. That is, the employment relationship is voluntary and may be terminated by either party with or without cause and without liability. Employment agreements and collective bargaining agreements often preclude at-will termination, but in the absence of such contractual protection an employee should assume that the employer has the right to terminate at-will. In the U.K., employment is typically subject to detailed contracts, often incorporating provisions of U.K. labor law intended to protect the employee from termination without good cause. Thus, terminations in the U.K. must be justifiable and in accordance with established rules, including a notice period. Failure to comply with the required procedures will likely result in claims for unfair dismissal or discrimination being brought against the employer.

Employment Authorization

In the U.S., non-citizens and non-permanent residents generally require governmental authorization to accept employment. In most cases, that authorization is in the form of a non-immigrant visa. Obtaining such visas can be difficult and expensive. On the other hand, enforcement of U.S. immigration laws is lax, and the penalties for hiring unauthorized workers light. As a result, unauthorized employment is common in the U.S. The penalties for such violations in the U.K. are severe. Therefore U.K. companies are meticulous in verifying employment authorization.


In the U.S., non-compete provisions tend to be common in employment agreements and they are generally enforceable so long as they are reasonable in the context of the surrounding circumstances. U.K. law tends to more protective of employees, so that non-compete clauses and other post-termination restrictions in employment agreements are often found to be unenforceable.


The U.S. and the U.K. have similar approaches to protecting the privacy of their citizen generally. However, they differ in the level of protection they provide in the case of employment screenings. Generally speaking, the U.S. allows employers to conduct background checks, and in most cases employers require potential employees to consent to such background checks. In the U.K., background checks are only allowed if relevant to the job in question. Moreover, U.K. data collection services must be registered with the government.

So, which law applies if you are a citizen of one country but working in the other? There is no easy answer except, “It depends.” As a rule, the law of the country where you are performing your services will apply. However, if you are only in that country briefly on a short business trip or secondment, for example, the law of your home country is likely to apply. Most employment agreements for ex-pats will state a governing law, but it is not certain those provisions will apply, especially if they conflict with the laws of country in which the employee is physically present and providing services. As always, it is best to consult with a qualified employment attorney.

This article was written together with Robert Tritter, a passionate freelance writer of law-related articles throughout the web. They write this on behalf of HJP&E, a group of great civil litigation lawyers in California who will go great lengths to serve you. If you have been a victim of Employee Discrimination, make sure to contact them and see how they can help you.

If you have a family member who died due to the negligent actions of an individual, business or government entity, you might be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit. Each state has different guidelines that determine the applicable statute of limitations and other restrictions, however, so it is important to consult with an attorney as soon as possible. For example, if the death occurs in Michigan, you will have three years to file a case, but there are some states that only give you one year.

What is the Definition of Wrongful Death?

For a wrongful death to occur, an individual must die due to the negligent action or inaction of another person or entity. For example, if a driver kills a pedestrian because they were looking at their phone instead of the road, a wrongful death lawsuit might be appropriate. Although each state’s wrongful death statute was written separately, there are four common elements that are typically represented.

The Four Elements that are Essential for a Wrongful Death Case

In order to file a successful wrongful death case, you will need to be able to prove each of the following:

1) The conduct of the defendant was at least partially responsible for the individual’s death.

2) The defendant’s specific action or inaction makes them both negligent and liable for the individual’s death.

3) The deceased is survived by a child, spouse, beneficiary or other legal dependent.

4) The family has incurred monetary expenses as a result of the individual’s death.

Wrongful Death Statistics

Each year, the majority of the 90,000 wrongful death cases that are filed in the U.S. are due to drunk driving and other traffic related incidents. Like most other lawsuits, it is typical for a wrongful death case to be settled out of court. The amount of money that the family will receive can be limited by the state. For example, Florida has a restriction in place that prohibits families from seeking more than 1.5 million in non-economic damages from a wrongful death case outside the medical field. If you are filing a case against a medical practitioner, however, you will only be able to ask for 1 million to cover non-economic damages.

Factors that will Influence the Settlement Amount

In addition to remaining compliant with your state’s guidelines for damages, you will also need to consider several factors when you decide on the amount of damages that you are seeking. If the case gets to a judge, they are going to take all of the following items into account: funeral expenses, expected earnings between the time of the accident and the victim’s anticipated retirement age, loss of parental companionship for any minor children, mental anguish suffered by the survivors, loss of all employment related benefits and the general character of the deceased. In other words, if a father of two is killed by a drunk driver at the age of 35, his family is likely to receive a much larger settlement than a retired man of 65 who was only survived by his spouse. In South Carolina, Charleston personal injury attorney firms see many different outcomes for wrongful death cases that occur each year.

Regardless of all the specific factors, it is always in your best interests to work with an attorney who has experience dealing with wrongful death lawsuits. Not only will they have a firm understanding of how the law works in your state, but they will also be able to draw on their experience to help you determine a fair settlement amount.

Anthony Joseph is a freelance author who enjoys writing about many different areas of law, and contributes this article toward the fight to keep our families safe. Having a Charleston personal injury attorney from the law firm of Howell & Christmas, can make the difference when trying to fight for what you rightly deserve. They have over 30 years of experience defending and protecting the rights of victims.