Author: Teodor StanevHi I’m Teodor, marketing assistant at Newnham & Jordan. Thanks for reading our blog! Follow us on social media for the latest news and updates!

Newnham & Jordan Solicitors at Tough Mudder

Newnham & Jordan Solicitors at Tough Mudder

Last Sunday our brave Conveyancing Executive Luke Hunt took part in the Tough Mudder obstacle race (also known as the “Toughest Event On the Planet”) in London. Fearlessly running through mud pits and swimming through murky waters he finally crossed the finishing line after 5 hours and 30 minutes, raising over £300 for McMillan Cancer Support Charity.

Who says that solicitors never get their hands dirty?


You can follow Luke on his journey through the treacherous obstacles in the video below.

Top 5 Legal Films

Top 5 Legal Films

Based on Harper Lee novel with the same name, it tells the story of Atticus Finch (played by Gregory Peck), a lawyer in the Depression-era South who’s defending a black man convicted of rape. Finch’s defence is not emotional, but based on the law, its dignity and importance. What makes this film unique is the performances and the emphasis on the characters, their spirit, heroism and good will, but also their failings and fragility. The film is considered a classic by critics and audiences alike.

When two shoplifting New Yorkers are surprised to hear that they’ve been accused of murder in Alabama, they call their cousin for help – an inexperienced, loudmouth lawyer by the name of Vincent Gambini (played by Joe Pesci). Despite his lack of experience, Vinny manages to get on top with his aggressive and perceptive questioning style and wit. The film is smart, entertaining, funny and greatly helped Joe Pesci’s career, putting him on the map.

Paul Biegler (played by James Steward), a small-time lawyer is being called by Laura Manion (played by Lee Remick), whose husband Ben Gazzara(played by Frederick Manion) has been convicted of a first-degree murder. The defendant says he suffered temporary insanity after the victim raped his wife. The realism of the film, admired by legal professionals, makes it stand out. The actors play their roles so exceptionally well that the audience is left guessing who did what until the end.

The story takes place in 1952, Britain, where upon his return to work (followed by a heart attack), Sir Wilfrid Robarts(played by Charles Laughton) takes on a case, despite his medical team’s disliking of him doing so. The team is led by a private nurse by the name of Miss Plimsoll(played by Elsa Lanchester), who tries to keep him away from his old destructive way of life while he takes his medication and gets his much needed rest. Witness For The Prosecution is a well acted, for the most part, and smartly written film.

The film is starring the 1902 court martial of Lieutenants Harry Morant (played by Edward Woodward), Peter Handcock (played by Bryan Brown) and George Witton (played by Lewis Fitz-Gerald). It centers around one of the first war crimes prosecutions in British military history. The Australian Lieutenants are accused of executing prisoners, in order to get attention away from crimes committed by their superior officers. The film is remarkable for its exploration of the politics of the death penalty and the human cost of war.

Julia Roberts plays Erin Brockovic in a true story based legal drama where she is a single mother, desperate to find a job. Her bad luck extends to a lawsuit she loses against a doctor who gets her in a car accident. Erin manages to persuade her lawyer Ed Masry (Albert Finney) to give her a job as a legal assistant in compensation for the loss. Whilst working in the office she stumbles upon some information on a little-known case filed against Pacific Gas and Electric. As she digs deeper she discovers a systematic cover-up of the industrial poisoning of a city’s water supply threatening the lives of the local community. The film is funny, entertaining, but also moving at the same time.

Newnham & Jordan Solicitors wins the South West National Apprenticeship Award 2016

Carrie Butterworth has been announced as a winner at the South West National Apprenticeship Awards 2016 regional ceremony.

Carrie, 20, who works as a Trainee Legal Executive (former apprentice) at Newnham & Jordan Solicitors was a winner in the region for Intermediate Apprentice of the Year.

29817162703_3a9de44228_zThe Awards, now in their thirteenth year, are run by the National Apprenticeship Service and recognise excellence in two areas: businesses that grow their own talent with apprentices and apprentices who have made a significant contribution to their workplaces.

On winning, Carrie said:

“My apprenticeship has given me a pathway into a competitive profession. It has provided me with the valuable practical experience needed to succeed within my role. I am a much more confident person and would recommend the route to anyone considering an alternative to University.”

Carrie won in recognition of the contribution she has made to Newnham & Jordan since joining as an apprentice in 2014 and since progressed to become a Trainee Legal Executive currently undertaking her Level 3 ILEX qualifications. Carrie has also visited her old Sixth Form to talk to some Year 12 students about the apprenticeship route into Law with a further assembly being organised for January 2017.

Sue Husband, Director of the National Apprenticeship Service, said:

“The National Apprenticeship Awards enable exceptional apprentices and dedicated employers to receive the recognition they richly deserve. Apprenticeships enable people to gain the skills and knowledge they need to succeed – in some cases up to degree level; and for businesses to grow the talent they need.

Newnham & Jordan Solicitors wins the South West National Apprenticeship Award 2016
Housing Market in High Supply

Housing Market in High Supply

It appears that the housing market is forgetting concerns triggered by Brexit, and people are deciding to just get on with it.

According to NAEA (National Association of Estate Agents), the number of homes for sale has hit a six-month high. They have reported that the average estate agency branch has 41 properties on its books.

The bad news for sellers is that buyers are bargaining hard, with reports of three-quarters of homes selling for less than the original asking price and sellers are having to be more realistic about the true value of their homes.

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So who does this effect? This increase in property for sale is great news for people who are thinking of buying property as they will have more Choice and possibly more bargaining power.

This will be very helpful for first-time buyers as the shortage of properties on the market, led to a significant mismatch between supply and demand, was one of the main factors pushing up prices.

The NAEA’s Figures show that the proportion of sales made to fist-time buyer has increased by 3% in August. This brings it to 28% of properties being bought by first time buyers, up from 20% the previous year.

The market slowed in the run up to the referendum due to uncertainty surrounding the outcome of the vote, with a low period following the rush to beat April’s stamp duty hike.

Its reported that two out of five estate agents expected the demand to increase further following the recent interest rate cut, with 25% of them expecting more first-time buyers to enter the market.

Mark Hayward, managing director, of the NAEA, said: “Following a few months of uncertainty in the market, it’s more than encouraging to see things moving in the right direction.”

The main points to take from this are;

The number of properties on the market have come to a six month high as the market seem to show signs of stabilising. The average estate agent has about 41 properties on their books, but three-quarters of properties are being sold for less than their original asking price.

If you are thinking about buying or selling, why not get one of our quick and easy conveyancing quotes. Just fill out one of our online forms and we send you an easy to read detailed quote. Click here to get a quote.

How to keep your information safe

More and more people nowadays are being defrauded. Cifas said that more than 80% of identity theft in the first three months of 2015 was attempted or perpetrated online. A lot of fraud and identity theft happens because people’s personal information is easily accessible. Here are our 6 top tips on how keep your information safe.

Social media

Social media is great, it allows you to keep up to date with friends and family across the world. But what people don’t realise is how much personal information is held on social channels like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. That’s why it’s always important to have the highest level of security set. It’s also very important to think about what you are posting; some people can post very sensitive information about themselves without thinking about it.

Secure websites

When shopping online, it’s always important to make sure that you are purchasing from a trusted site. The last thing you want to do is give all your personal information and payment information to an unsecured website, just to save a few pounds.

Here are a few points to look for when internet shopping:

HTTPS

HTTPS Stands for Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure. This shows that data (information) transmitted between client(You) and server (Website) is encrypted and secured.

Padlock Symbol

The Padlock shows what the HTTPS already tells you, the data sent through the website is encrypted and secure.

Company name in address bar

Companies tend to be more trust worthy if they use the companies name in their web address. But note some trusted companies don’t use their name in their web address. For example, B&Q Use www.diy.com, this is because you can’t use symbols in a web address.

Site seals

There are loads of different site seals out there. Site seals show customers that a website is safe and secure. Norton and McAfee are two of the most common and trusted Site Seals.

Strong passwords and passcodes

It’s very important to make sure that you use strong passwords for all your online accounts. Its best to use a combination of upper and lower case letters, numbers and if allowed symbols. It’s always best to avoid using your name, date of birth, Sports names, Animal names, Pet’s names and common words related to login. The word “Password” is the most used password, this might make it easier to login to your accounts but also makes it easier for hackers to steal your information.

It’s advised to never use the same password for multiple accounts. And it’s also a good idea to change your passwords every couple of months.

Another important security factor is Passcodes on smartphones and other devices. It’s very worrying how many people do not have a passcodes set on their phone, phones nowadays hold so much personal information like name, numbers, addresses, email addresses, tickets and bank details. If your phone gets lost or stolen and you don’t have a passcode all this information is easily accessible.

Don’t store Personal information

Following on from the last point, try to avoid storing personal/ sensitive information on your computer or devices. It may save time when purchasing items on the internet, but just think what would happen if your computer or device ended up in the wrong hands?

Lost or stolen

If you do keep personal/ sensitive information on your phone or tablet, then its best to have a “find my phone” feature set up. For iPhones, iPads and Macs, apple have a feature that allows you to track, lock and even erase your device if you think its lost or stolen. Android devices have a similar feature which is called “Android Device Manager”. To find out more about these features click here for apple and click here for android.

Keep it up to date

It might be a pain every time you go to shut down your computer that it has to install several updates, and your phone keeps reminding you every evening to update. But these updates happen so that your computer or device runs as quickly as it can, without any problems. Sometimes big updates add new features to your device. But the main reason why these updates are made, are to improve security. These updates stop hackers from stealing your information from your devices.

Antivirus software

Antivirus software is a must have on any device. Antivirus software’s protect your computer from computer viruses, they also prevent people trying to hack in to your computer. Some Antivirus software scans the internet, letting you know if the web pages you are visiting are safe.

It’s also strongly advised to install an Antivirus software on your phone and tablet. McAFee include free use of their antivirus app for phones and tablets when you purchase their Antivirus software for computers.

Those are our 6 top tips on how keep your information safe when using all your devices. Points to remember:

  • Limit what information you put on your social media profiles
  • Make sure you only use secure websites (look out for a site seal)
  • Use strong passwords and have passcodes set up on all your devices
  • Avoid having personal information saved on your computers and devices
  • Have a “find my phone” feature set up to track your device if lost or stolen
  • Keep your devices up to date
  • Make sure you have Antivirus software installed on all computer and devices
How to keep your information safe