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Who is expected to be principal accountable person in local authorities who are landlords of high rises?

This will be dependent upon the how the leasehold structure is set up for each relevant building, but it may be the local authority. We would be happy to provide further advice in relation to specific buildings if you contact us separately with the relevant details and documents.

Related FAQs

How do I ensure my use of video conferencing calls complies with GDPR?

With the loss of face-to-face meetings in the current situation, video conferencing has taken centre stage. But how do you do that in a compliant way? Here are some of the main high-level data protection issues to consider when selecting and implementing a new third party provider’s video conferencing system.

  1. Make sure you do your due diligence on the security measures offered by the provider. Clearly you can’t visit them, so look at the information offered publicly by the provider and read good quality, reliable, third party sources and ask the provider questions directly. Also ask any other organisations you know that use the provider. Document all this.
  2. If personal information is being sent outside of the UK/European Economic Area, make sure that transfer complies with GDPR. If it’s a US provider, is it registered in the EU-US Privacy Shield list or does it offer a model clause contract (you’re likely to need the 2010 version)? Or is the service provided from a country whose data protection laws offer equivalent protection to those in Europe? Look at the support service as well as the hosting. Document this.
  3. Make sure you put a compliant processor agreement in place. The provider should offer one as part of the contract terms. Check it meets GDPR requirements.
  4. You’re likely to need to update your privacy notice, particularly if you’re going to record calls. Provide participants with a short message and link to the privacy notice in the meeting invite and on any registration page.
  5. Create or update other GDPR-mandated documentation – for example, depending on your use, you may need a legitimate interests assessment and to update your record of processing.
  6. Finally, configure and use the system in a secure and compliant way. Look at the settings/options carefully and think through the security and compliance implications of each. That could include deciding who in the meeting can share their screen; whether or not you use passwords for participants; whether or not to record, and if you’re going to record, where to store the recording. Document your decisions and the reasons for them.

The ICO has said it understands that resources, whether they are finances or people, might be diverted away from usual compliance work during the pandemic. However the last thing you need at the moment is to create a bigger problem than the one you are trying to solve. So do the best you can, ask for help from one of our specialists if you need it, and keep the whole thing under review.

On 16 April 2020, Ian Hulme, the ICO’s Director of Assurance, posted a blog for business owners, employers and managers about how to safely roll out the latest video conferencing technology.

On 21 April 2020, the NCSC published security guidance for organisations on choosing, configuring and deploying video conferencing services.

I don’t live in the same home as my child’s other parent. Can my child move between each house?

If you are separated from your child’s other parent, government guidance about self-isolation and social distancing may have an impact on the contact arrangements that are in place and give rise to disagreements about spending time with the other parent, travelling arrangements and whether the child should continue to go to school, where one of the parents is a key worker and a school place is available.

The government has issued guidance which makes it clear that where parents do not live in the same household, children under the age of 18 can be moved between their parents’ homes.

Cafcass has also issued guidance which states that, “unless there are justified medical/self-isolation issues – or some future nationally issued guidance or expectation associated with leaving the house in your area – children should maintain their usual routine of spending time with each of their parents. If there is a Child Arrangements Order in place this should be complied with unless to do so would put your child, or others, at risk”.  The guidance from Cafcass be accessed here.  https://mcusercontent.com/2750134472ba930f1bc0fddcd/files/987e77d6-0827-470c-9447-acc61404f465/CAFCASS_Covid19_advice_for_familes_20.pdf

BSA 2022 states that RP’s will have greater powers (to encourage residents to provide access and to fulfill their duties). What are these powers and when are they expected?

Residents will be obliged to:

  • Not act in a way that creates a significant risk of a building safety risk materialising
  • Not interfere with building safety equipment in the common parts
  • Comply with an Accountable Person’s request for information in relation to the assessment and management of building safety risks.

The Accountable Person then has powers in relation to these duties, including:

  • Issuing a contravention notice, requiring a resident to pay for replacement or repair of safety equipment which they have interfered with
  • Applying for court orders in certain situations
  • Requesting access at a reasonable time (in writing with at least 48 hours’ notice) to a resident’s property for the purposes of assessing or managing building safety risks, or checking compliance with the resident’s duties as above.

Secondary legislation is still awaited to bring these provisions into force, so the timing is unknown, but it will likely be within the next 12 months in line with the anticipated timetable for the remainder of the Act.

Will remote court hearings be permitted?

Court hearings have been conducted remotely, with the judgment in Kerry v SSCLG being given via telephone. The Senior President of Tribunals issued emergency Practice Directions which will apply to Property and Lands Chambers’ respectively. This has made provision for remote hearings. Inspections of properties have been suspended with immediate effect, with photographs, videos or external visits permitted where appropriate. Where inspections are essential, the case should be stayed.

Even if the Government pays the wages of my employees who are not working, there is still not enough money to pay the bills. What should I do?

Click here for details of what sort of things directors should consider if the business is insolvent .

There may be additional sources of funding available in addition to the funding made available to help pay the wages.

If you still have concerns that your business might not be able to survive you should take advice as soon as possible from our team of experts or an insolvency or restructuring practitioner. That doesn’t necessarily mean that the business is bound to fail but your advisers will be able to explore with you different ways to navigate through the current difficulties faced by the business and any restructuring/refinancing opportunities based on their extensive experience of helping companies that are facing financial problems. If ultimately saving the business in its current form is not possible, your advisors can help you ensure that you do everything you can to protect your employees and creditors whilst also ensuring that you comply with your duties as a director.