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GN Law TV
Have you been assaulted by a police officer? Perhaps you feel that you have been wrongfully arrested. Maybe the police are harassing you. I�m Andrew Guile, a solicitor at GN Law and for the last 20 years I have specialised in bringing complaints and compensation claims against the police and in this video I am going to briefly explain the process for seeking compensation against the police.
How do you get compensation from the police?
The first thing to mention is that seeking compensation and making complaints about misconduct are two completely different things. Please see other videos on this site for more information about those differences.
In this video I am going to give a brief overview of what compensation claims are about and how you go about them.
Suing for compensation is a two stage process. Firstly you need to send a Letter of Claim to the Legal Department of the relevant police force. The purpose of this is to set out your claim, in other words, you need to set out what you say the police have done wrong. For example, wrongfully arresting you, assaulting you or trespassing into your house. You also need to say what effect it has had upon you.
The hope always is that the police will agree to settle your case without the need to go to Court. However, if they won�t settle your case out of Court then you need to move to the second stage which is to start Court proceedings.
Court proceedings are complex and are outside the scope of this video. If the police are willing to settle your case then you need to have some idea of what your case is worth. Again, more about that in another video
Do you need a lawyer?
It may surprise you but most people who sue the police do so without legal representation. It can be done but undoubtedly you are better off with a lawyer behind you who understands the law and can argue your case for you. The law in this area can be very complex and can change rapidly as new cases are decided in Court. You are definitely at a disadvantage when the police have their own lawyers behind them and you do not.
So what can you sue for?
Common claims are for wrongful arrest, false imprisonment, assault, trespass, discrimination and malicious prosecution. I look at each of these in more depth in other videos on this site. Please take a look at other videos on this site as they may answer in more depth other questions that you have or call me, or any of my colleagues, for a free chat to see if we can help.
Transcript coming soon!
Divorce can happen at any stage of a marriage, after only being married a few months or indeed after 60 years. It is always a painful and difficult process. My name is Donald Galbraith, I am a Solicitor and I have been involved in the law for 40 years. Today I am going to advise you on divorce.
Divorce is a three stage process. The first stage is Petition, the second stage is Decree Nisi and the final stage is Decree Absolute. It can take 6 months - it is that long because within the process there are in-built delays in case you want to get reconciled. In order to start a divorce you need grounds of divorce. There are 5 grounds but only 2 are really relevant - unreasonable behaviour and two year separation with consent.
In order to start the process you need to issue what is known as a Petition at your local County Court. You can get the forms either from the Court or there is helpful guidance on our website. You need to fill in the Divorce Petition, you need to enclose the original marriage certificate and the appropriate Court fee. The other side, your spouse, will then have to return what is known as the Acknowledgement of Service. Once that happens you will then be in a position to apply for the Decree Nisi of Divorce, otherwise known as the half way stage. Once Decree Nisi has been pronounced by the Court, and usually you do not need to attend Court for that or indeed any other part of the process, you can then apply 6 weeks later for Decree Absolute of Divorce. If you need any help or guidance regarding a divorce please feel free to telephone either me or indeed any one of my team for a confidential chat either on the telephone or to come to the office.
What Is Mental Capacity
What do you do if a friend or loved one isn't able to make their own decisions any more? Or if you are worried about losing the ability to make your own decisions in the future?
My name is Maria Nicholas. I am a solicitor and a director at Guile Nicholas. I head our Court of Protection department and specialise in mental capacity law, as well as community care. Today I'm going to talk about the issue of mental capacity.
Mental capacity is an individual's mental ability to make a decision at a particular point in time. These decisions could include, for example, where to invest or how to spend their money, who should provide the care that they need and how that care should be provided, who they should see, where they should live or if they can enter into a marriage.
The issue of mental capacity may arise if someone has an mental illness, or a learning disability. Quite often it will arise as someone gets older, particularly if they suffer with dementia.
If you are concerned about a family member lacking mental capacity, it is important to follow the procedures set out in the Mental Capacity Act 2005.
The first step is to get a capacity assessment, preferably from a doctor (a GP or psychiatrist). If the person does lack capacity, a best interests decision will need to be taken on their behalf. You may need to apply to the Court of Protection, to obtain the legal authority to act on that person's behalf or to make a decision for them.
You may need to apply to be appointed as that person's deputy, which will allow you to act on their behalf either in relation to their property and financial affairs, or in relation to their health and welfare. Alternatively, you may already have a power of attorney, but you will need to apply to the Office of Public Guardian (also known as the OPG) to register that power of attorney. The OPG can also give guidance on acting as someone's deputy or power of attorney.
Equally, you may want to plan ahead for yourself, and choose some to grant power of attorney to for the future.
This is only an introduction to issues of mental capacity, so please do take a look at the other videos on this site as they may answer other questions you have. Or call me or one of my colleagues, for a free chat to see if we can help.