Christmas at the Queen's raises over £2000

Christmas at the Queen's raises over £2000
Pinney Talfourd teamed up with Queen's Theatre Hornchurch and Dawn Chorus for a Christmas sing-along and raised over £2,000 for charity.

Pinney Talfourd once again teamed up with Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch in early December to host ‘Christmas at the Queen’s’ – a lively free sing along event for the whole community.

Our fantastic local choir Dawn Chorus joined us to lead the crowd for a series of upbeat Christmas songs including “Sleigh Ride” and “Merry Christmas Everyone” before enjoying tea and mince pies with the Mayor of Havering Cllr Philippa Crowder.

This was a free event but the charity raffle and generous donations raised £2,061 in aid of the Queen's Theatre charitable trust and Pinney Talfourd’s own charity of the year MNDA (South Essex branch). Local businesses rallied to support the event by donating some fabulous prizes from champagne, restaurant vouchers and even a teeth whitening treatment! Funds raised are divided equally between the two charities.

This event has attracted a full house every year and this year was no different. Local businesses, Councillors and members of the local community checked in for this festive celebration. Many clients with transport difficulties were taken as guests by Pinny Talfourd, ensuring that Christmas is not a lonely time after all.

Teas, coffees and cakes were on offer courtesy of Pinney Talfourd after the event to refresh those vocal chords, providing an opportunity to meet new faces and make new friends. Thank you to the Queen's Theatre Club volunteers who helped to serve refreshments.

If you would like to find out more about the Queen's Theatre Club or enquire about any performances please contact the Box Office on 01708 443333. If you would like to find out more about this event or Pinney Talfourd’s services please contact 01708 229444.

Finally, everybody at Pinney Talfourd would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a happy new year.

  



  962 Hits
962 Hits

Seminar: Controlling cash flow & increasing profit

pro-actions-workshop
HCCI offers their latest seminar for SMEs, by Pro-actions Business Support on 14 December at our Upminster office.

 

Controlling your cash and increasing your profitability
Wednesday 14th December 2016
9.30am to 12.30pm 
Pinney Talfourd, 54 Station Road, Upminster, RM14 2TU

Cash management can have a massive impact on any business; small, medium or large. This briefing will explain the vital elements of effective cash management that all businesses should have in place, what they look like, how they can be built, how much control they'll give you over your business. Most importantly you’ll find out how they can be used to make informed strategic decisions on your business allowing you to make better profits and put more cash in the bank. 

 
The objectives of this business seminar are to help you understand:
  • How cash and finances fit into a business
  • Why financial controls are important
  • What financial controls are needed?
  • How to influence cash movement in your business
  • What options you have available to help fund your business’s day to day needs
  • How you can get the controls you need underway within your business

The seminar is free and will be held at Pinney Talfourd’s offices in Upminster (54 Station Road, Upminster, RM14 2TU) to book a place on this seminar, click on link below:

www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/controlling-your-cash-and-increasing-your-profitability-london-tickets-29372132840 

If you require any further details please contact the Chair of HCCI on Barry Hicks 01708 560066 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

 

  850 Hits
850 Hits

You are invited to 'Christmas at the Queen's'

You are invited to 'Christmas at the Queen's'
Pinney Talfourd presents a Christmas sing-along at  the Queens Theatre Hornchurch, and you're invited.

Pinney Talfourd has once again teamed up with Queens Theatre Hornchurch to host ‘Christmas at the Queens’ on Tuesday 6 December (11am – 1pm).

This event has attracted a full house every year with guests including local businesses and councillors.

We are delighted that the Dawn Chorus have once again agreed to join us in singing a range of upbeat Christmas songs including “Let it Snow” and “Jingle Bells”. The Mayor of Havering will also be joining in the fun and say a few words at the end of the event.

This is a free charity event and donations will be gratefully received at the time of booking. There will also be a raffle in aid of the Queens Theatre charitable trust and Pinney Talfourd’s own charity of the year; Motor Neurone Disease Association (South Essex branch). Local businesses have rallied to support the event by donating some fabulous prizes again this year for the raffle which in previous years have included champagne, restaurant vouchers and even a limited edition art print.

Finally, after all the excitement you are welcome to stay for a drink, mince pies and cupcakes courtesy of Pinney Talfourd.

Book a place

Booking is now open and filling up fast so call the Queens Theatre Box Office on 01708 443333 to reserve your space early.

P.S. Christmas jumpers and Santa hats are welcome!

 

 

  796 Hits
796 Hits

Sebastian Burrows cycles London - Paris for MNDA

bikeride
Sebastian Burrows will be taking part in the famous London to Paris bike ride, in aid of our charity of the year MNDA (South Essex Branch)

Sebastian is a Senior Associate Solicitor in the firm's Family Law Department. Although Sebastian is a keen cyclist already, this event will see him training like never before for the 4 day, 300 mile ride, that leaves Crystal Palace on 19 April 2017 and arrives at the Arc de Triomphe on 22 April.

Sebastian will be focusing on day one in particular which will take the Peloton from Crystal Palace to Calais, a distance of 100 miles. In competitive style he will be trying to ensure he arrives at Dover first to board the ferry. The ultimate aim of the event is to raise at least £1,500 for MNDA. Sebastian and the firm hope very much that the target can be smashed in support of this worthy cause.

Sir Bradley Wiggins has kicked off his fundraising and if you would like to contribute too please visit Sebastian’s Just Giving page. All donations no matter how small WILL make a difference. 

Donate here: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Sebastian-Burrows-L2P

What is MND?

Motor Neurone Disease is terminal and there is currently no treatment or cure. Average length from diagnosis to death is 18 months. In that 18 months the person with MND will lose their ability to speak. Then the muscles die – all of them. This leaves the sufferer unable to walk, talk, move, blink, go to the toilet or swallow. They have to be fed through a peg fitted into their stomach.

What it doesn’t affect is the brain – that still functions normally so you end up with a person trapped inside a body that in effect has already died.

MNDA South Essex Branch

The South Essex branch comprises of five people, all volunteers. They work extremely hard to raise funds and awareness for the disease.

They spend money on lots of different things such as;
  • Converting a bathroom to a wet room
  • Conversions and adaptations to house so people can remain at home
  • Small disability devices and ramps for wheelchairs
  • Stair lifts
  • Communication aids
  • Respite care
  • Travel to hospital appointments

They also arrange social events for those with MND and their carers to meet up and provide support to eachother.

The local website is www.mndsouthessex.org/

Contact sebastian

If you would like to find out more about this event or speak to Sebastian about his challenge please contact 01708 463211.
 
 
 
  581 Hits
581 Hits

Franchise contracts: what to look out for Part 2

AmyL
Franchise law specialist Amy Leite's latest article on WorkingMums.co.uk looks at key terms to be aware of, regarding renewal and franchisor obligations, in a franchise agreement contract.
 
Franchise law specialist Amy Leite is currently writing a series of articles for WorkingMums.co.uk, a leading job and community website for professional working mothers and fathers.

Her last article focussed on the key franchise agreement terms of the franchise contract that franchisees should be aware of to help ensure they sign up with their eyes fully open. You can read this here. 
 
The article below continues to demystify some key terms, covering renewal and the franchisor’s initial and continuing obligations.
 

A foreword from amy

As I said previously, before you read any further, articles such as this should not be seen as a substitute for taking legal advice on the terms of your franchise agreement but more a tool to help you have a working knowledge of the terms of the franchise agreement before you have it reviewed and thereafter.

There are key franchise agreement terms you should look out for in your draft franchise agreement. We are often surprised to hear how many people do not take advice on the terms of their franchise agreement prior to signing it. Often we hear that this was because they were told it was non-negotiable or the fees for a review seemed high. In our experience, regardless of whether the franchise agreement is negotiable or not, being fully aware of what your franchise agreement means in order to take a considered commercial decision and enter the agreement with your eyes open is invaluable.

It is therefore very important that you have at least read the franchise agreement ahead of your solicitor carrying out a review for you. It is very rare that a franchise review (either by report or otherwise) would comment on every single clause of the agreement and, as you will be expected to abide by the terms, you need to be clear on what all the terms are however unimportant certain things may seem.

Renewal

When considering whether a franchise will be suitable for your needs you need to consider what your long term business goals are. Are you looking to take a franchise as an income stream to carry you through to retirement in 5 years time? or are you looking at the franchise as a long term income stream and potentially with a view to building a business up which is capable of being re-sold?

It is important to consider your strategy in light of the renewal provisions in your franchise agreement. Your franchise agreement should contain a right of renewal i.e. the right to enter into a new franchise agreement for a further term after expiry of the first 5 (or 10) year term.

Continue reading
  687 Hits
687 Hits

Catherine completes 100 mile cycle for charity

catherinelbikeridemedal
Partner Catherine Loadman completed the Prudential RideLondon-Surrey 100 on 31 July - a 100 mile bike ride in aid of MNDA (South Essex Branch). 
Catherine Loadman took part in the Prudential RideLondon-Surrey 100 on 31 July 2016 and raised over £620 for Pinney Talfourd's Charity of the Year MNDA (South Essex Branch).
 
It was an early (and chilly) start from the Olympic Stadium at Stratford but the sun soon came out as Catherine rode through London and then on to the Surrey hills.

There were a few hold ups due to accidents which meant that Catherine's anticipated finish time of 3.30pm became 5.30pm... At one point Catherine was held up for an hour and a half after which her legs were not too pleased about having to get back on her bike and start pedaling!

She recalls that the famous Box Hill was probably the biggest challenge with it's hairpin bends winding up and up but she made it without having to dismount, albeit very slowly!

Catherine said "This was a huge challenge and I am very proud of this achievement." She added that the best thing about the day was the atmosphere and the crowds cheering the riders on all along the course which really helped, particularly when she was getting close to the finish and had to go up the final hill in Wimbledon before the ride back through central London to the finish line on The Mall in front of Buckingham Palace.

Funds raised so far

Catherine has beaten her target and so far raised over £622 (including Gift Aid) with more donations still coming in and would like to thank everyone who has sponsored her to help raise vital funds for MNDA (South Essex Branch) to help them continue with the amazing work that they do to support sufferers of this terrible disease.

Still time to donate

Catherine is a Partner at the Firm and a member of our Family Law Department. You still have time to donate at Virginmoneygiving.com/CatherineLoadmanContact Catherine on 01277 249383 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you would like to find out more. 
 

What is MND?

Motor Neurone Disease is terminal and there is currently no treatment or cure. No one knows how or why people get it. Average length from diagnosis to death is 18 months.

In that 18 months the person with MND will lose their ability to speak – this is often the first thing to go. Then the muscles die – all of them. This leave the sufferer unable to walk, talk, move, blink, go to the toilet or swallow. They have to be fed through a peg fitted into their stomach.

What it doesn’t affect is the brain – that still functions normally so you end up with a person trapped inside a body that in effect has already died. It affects all ages. For some reason it only seems to affect people who are active, couch potatoes don’t get this disease.

MNDA South Essex Branch

The South Essex branch comprises of five people, all volunteers. They work extremely hard to raise funds and awareness for the disease.

They spend money on lots of different things such as;
  • Converting a bathroom to a wet room
  • Conversions and adaptations to house so people can remain at home
  • Small disability devices and ramps for wheelchairs
  • Stair lifts

In addition to this, they purchase iPads and boogie boards as these are essential communication aids when the voice goes. They might buy new bedding for someone who has a single hospital bed delivered. They pay for respite care and might fund private travel for hospital appointments in London.

They also do fun things – last year they had a summer lunch at Wat Tyler Country park for people with MND and the health care professionals – the consultants and nurses took a day off work to come and meet with their patients in an informal setting. At Christmas they went to the panto and had a Christmas lunch.

They have social meetings for those with MND and their carers to meet up have a coffee and cake and have a chat.

In short they do whatever is needed to ease and assist those with MND and their carers.

The local website is www.mndsouthessex.org/

 

  663 Hits
663 Hits

Franchise contracts: what to look out for

AmyL
Franchise law specialist Amy Leite's latest article on WorkingMums.co.uk focuses on the key terms to be aware of in a franchise agreement contract. 
 
Franchise law specialist Amy Leite is currently writing a series of articles for WorkingMums.co.uk, a leading job and community website for professional working mothers (and fathers).

She continues her series of articles this month, focussing on the key franchise agreement terms of the franchise contract that franchisees should be aware of to help ensure they sign up with their eyes fully open.

The importance of reading your contract

There are key franchise agreement terms you should look out for in your draft franchise agreement. Firstly, I need to remind you that articles such as this should not be seen as a substitute for taking legal advice on the terms of your franchise agreement. These are more of a tool to help you have a working knowledge of the terms of the franchise agreement before you have it reviewed and thereafter.

We are often surprised to hear how many people do not take advice on the terms of their franchise agreement prior to signing it. Often we hear that this was because they were told it was non-negotiable or the fees for a review seemed high. In our experience, regardless of whether the franchise agreement is negotiable or not, being fully aware of what your franchise agreement means in order to take a considered commercial decision and enter the agreement with your eyes open is invaluable.

It is therefore very important that you have at least read the franchise agreement ahead of your solicitor carrying out a review for you. It is very rare that a franchise review (either by report or otherwise) would comment on every single clause of the agreement and, as you will be expected to abide by the terms, you need to be clear on what all the terms are however unimportant certain things may seem.

We are therefore preparing a series of articles which will cover, each time, two or three of the main clauses you need to be aware of in your franchise agreement. This first article will cover parties, the grant, territory and term.

The parties:

You need to be clear on who the parties to the franchise agreement are. The first party will be the franchisor which will almost always be a company. It is advisable to do some research at Companies House on how long the company has been going, if there are any similarly named companies and whether these are linked to the franchisor and have a look at their accounts if possible.

The second party to the franchise agreement will be the franchisee. The franchisee will either be a company or an individual person. Where the franchisee is a company there will be a third party to the franchise agreement who will be an individual who is a party to the franchise agreement for the purpose of guaranteeing all of the obligations of the company franchisee (usually they are described as the individual, principal or guarantor).

The key thing to understand is that because the franchisor is a company it will always have a limited liability status, but if you are the individual, principal or guarantor to a franchisee company you will not have limited liability status and you will be personally responsible for ensuring that the franchisee complies with their obligations under the terms of the franchise agreement. You will agree in the franchise agreement to personally guarantee the franchisee’s obligations and to indemnify the franchisor against costs and losses it suffers if the franchisee does not keep to their end of the deal. If you personally are the franchisee all of the responsibilities will be yours in any event.

Grant, Territory and Term:

The grant clause is one of the most important clauses in the franchise agreement, it sets out what the franchisee is being licensed by the franchisor to use and do during the term of the franchise agreement. It is key that you are clear on what your franchise business can do.

The franchisor will generally grant the franchisee the right to use their intellectual property, method or system (the know-how, procedures for operation of the business/provision of the services, expertise, methods of marketing etc) to operate the franchisee’s business in the territory during the term.

You should always check the definition of the “business”, “franchisee’s business” or “franchise business” so that you are clear what the business involves according to the terms of the franchise agreement. Generally, the “business”, “franchisee’s business” or “franchise business” will be limited to the provision of the defined Services and/or selling/using the defined Products or Equipment. You need to be sure that the definitions of Services and Products cover everything you believe you are entitled to do as part of the franchisee’s business as you will not be permitted to offer additional services/products without consent if they fall outside of the grant.

You should look closely at the territory you are being granted. It should be defined by a map attached as a schedule or a number of postcodes. Ensure that it is large enough to provide you with good income and look closely at the make- up of the territory – is it rural or town based and is it made up more or commercial or residential customers? Consider how this affects your target market.

You also need to be clear on what, if any, exclusivity you are being granted in respect of the territory. Is it exclusive only in terms of the franchisor not being allowed to grant third parties the right to operate in your territory or does it also expressly exclude the franchisor from operating in your territory too? Look out throughout the franchise agreement for circumstances in which your exclusivity does not apply or where it can be removed or limited, for example, in the case of national accounts or if you fail to hit any performance targets.

You must be clear that the rights you are granted by the franchisor only last for the term (the length) of the franchise agreement. Ordinarily a franchise agreement term is five or, less commonly, 10 years.

On expiry of the term if you do not renew your franchise agreement your rights under the franchise agreement will come to an end and you will no longer have a right to operate the franchisee’s business using the items the franchisor granted to you.

In the next article we will be looking at rights of renewal and the franchisor’s initial and continuing obligations.

 

More information

For more information please contact our Franchise Law Department.

For the full article on WorkingMums website click here

  715 Hits
715 Hits

Catherine Loadman cycles for charity

logo
Catherine Loadman takes part in the Prudential RideLondon-Surrey 100 on 31 July - a 100 mile bike ride in aid of MNDA (South Essex Branch). 
Catherine is a Partner at the Firm and a member of our Family Law Department. She is raising money for MNDA (South Essex Branch) which is Pinney Talfourd's Charity of the Year.

Prudential RideLondon-Surrey 100 celebrates the legacy for cycling created by the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. It starts in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, then follows a 100-mile route on closed roads through the capital and into Surrey’s stunning countryside.

With leg-testing climbs and a route made famous by the world’s best cyclists at the London 2012 Olympics, it finishes on The Mall in central London, shortly before 150 professional cyclists race in the Prudential RideLondon-Surrey Classic on a similar route.

Catherine has been in training and hopes to raise £500 by completing the course - although she keeps warning us all that she is not a natural cyclist at all and has never done anything like this before!

If you would like to sponsor Catherine in this mammoth task – you can read her story and donate at Virginmoneygiving.com/CatherineLoadman

What is MND?

Motor Neurone Disease is a truly evil illness. It is terminal and there is currently no treatment or cure. No one knows how or why people get it. Average length from diagnosis to death is 18 months.

In that 18 months the person with MND will lose their ability to speak – this is often the first thing to go. Then the muscles die – all of them. This leave the sufferer unable to walk, talk, move, blink, go to the toilet or swallow. They have to be fed through a peg fitted into their stomach.

What it doesn’t affect is the brain – that still functions normally so you end up with a person trapped inside a body that in effect has already died. It affects all ages. For some reason it only seems to affect people who are active, couch potatoes don’t get this disease.

MNDA South Essex Branch

The South Essex branch comprises of five people, all volunteers. They work extremely hard to raise funds and awareness for the disease.

They spend money on lots of different things such as;
  • Converting a bathroom to a wet room
  • Conversions and adaptations to house so people can remain at home
  • Small disability devices and ramps for wheelchairs
  • Stair lifts

In addition to this, they purchase iPads and boogie boards as these are essential communication aids when the voice goes. They might buy new bedding for someone who has a single hospital bed delivered. They pay for respite care and might fund private travel for hospital appointments in London.

They also do fun things – last year they had a summer lunch at Wat Tyler Country park for people with MND and the health care professionals – the consultants and nurses took a day off work to come and meet with their patients in an informal setting. At Christmas they went to the panto and had a Christmas lunch.

They have social meetings for those with MND and their carers to meet up have a coffee and cake and have a chat.

In short they do whatever is needed to ease and assist those with MND and their carers.

The local website is www.mndsouthessex.org/

Contact Catherine

If you would like to find out more about this event or speak to Catherine about her challenge please contact her on 01277 249383.

 

  616 Hits
616 Hits

Keeley Miller runs her first ever Charity Race

Alzheimer-Logo
On Sunday 17th July, Keeley Miller will be taking part in her first ever race for charity - Great Newham 10K Run
On Sunday 17 July, I will be taking part in my first ever race for charity. I have never been particularly athletic, always too busy with work and family to make time for exercise but I have discovered during my training for this race that running actually improves my work and home life.

I have been running in local streets and parks and by being outdoors I have found that these training sessions help to clear my head after my day at the office allowing me to focus on my family when I am at home in the evening.

Research shows that running generates new brain cells and a good run enhances sensory perception and increased attention span. Running in a natural environment increased these rewards with improved ability to concentrate, lowering blood pressure and reducing stress.

Although my body is taking longer than my brain to adapt to this new regime, I would highly recommend running as a brilliant form of stress relief; no costly gym membership required or any fancy equipment and no booking necessary! I believe that I will continue to run for my own wellbeing after I have completed this challenge, which is still quite daunting, I have run a 10k in training now and it wasn’t easy but I did feel a sense of achievement at the end.


If you would like to sponsor me in this event I am raising funds for Alzheimer’s Society – you can read my story at https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Keeley-Miller


If you would like to find out more about this event or Pinney Talfourd’s services please contact 01708 229444.

 

  679 Hits
679 Hits

What to ask a franchisor when buying a franchise

AmyL
Amy Leite provides regular franchise law advice on WorkingMums.co.uk. Her latest article focuses on what to ask a franchisor when buying a franchise.
 
Amy Leite is a solicitor at Pinney Talfourd Solicitors in Essex. She has specialised in franchise law for many years and shares her expert legal knowledge with WorkingMums.co.uk readers who are looking into buying a franchise.

"The most important tip is not to be afraid to ask the franchisor difficult questions", says Amy "these will undoubtedly form part of your decision-making process. If the franchisor can’t or won’t answer them you should think very hard about whether you really want to be tied in to a five-year agreement with that franchisor."

What is my commitment?

You need to know from the start exactly what your commitment is. Is the franchise agreement for a term of five years or more or less? And what are your commitments in terms of opening hours/ business hours? Can you carry out the business part time or is it strictly a full time (and potentially more) business? Some franchisors will tell you it is up to you how many hours you put in, but you must check the franchise agreement and/ or operations manual which often stipulate the minimum business hours. Also consider the amount of admin/ back office work you will be required to do and add this on to your time commitment each day. Try to find out how much back office assistance you get from the franchisor (if any) so do they centrally invoice for example or do they offer a calls line to cut down your admin time?

What support am I going to get from you?

You need to know and understand exactly what it is you will be receiving from the franchisor on an ongoing basis. Ask them what they provide i.e. will they negotiate the best deals for franchisee’s from third party product suppliers, do they provide a central telephone enquiry line, do they pass on leads and if so within what timeframe, what advertising and promotion of the business will they do independently of your own obligations? Once you have a detailed and specific list of what you are actually receiving by way of support, assistance and guidance ensure this is set out in the franchisor’s obligations under the franchise agreement. If the franchisor’s obligations are vague and do not specify any of these things you will not be able to force the franchisor to provide these things.

How many franchises have not worked out and why?

Do not be afraid to ask if there have been any franchise failures. These things happen and a good franchisor will be open and honest with you about any franchises that haven’t worked out and the reasons why. You need to know whether there has have been a high turnover of franchisees, why this was and what the franchisor did about this. Ask the franchisor if they have been required to take legal action against any ex-franchisees and for the circumstances. This will help you work out what they do to protect the franchise network from ex-franchisees.

How many franchisees have been able to re-sell their franchise business?

If your strategy is to buy a franchise that you can build up, have an income stream from and then potentially re-sell at a later stage you need to know whether this particular franchise re-sells easily or at all. Find out how many have been re-sold, at what price and how long they were part of the network and how long the businesses were up for sale. This is all key information you will need to know to plan your future within the network.

How many franchisees do you currently have and can I speak to them all?

A franchisor should be willing to provide you with a full list of franchisees who you can speak to about the opportunity. You can then pick from the list a few franchisees who are a few months into their franchise to see what support on setting up they have received and how things are going, a few who are mid-term again to see how they have found things and any tips and a few people who are nearing the end of their term and who have renewed their agreements. This will give you a good spread of people and hopefully you will receive a balanced view of the network. If a franchisor is selecting one or two franchisees that they are willing for you to speak to you should exercise caution and ask to pick your own franchisees to speak to.

Do these cash flows include all the franchise expenditure or is anything missing and whose figures have these been taken from?

More often than not you will be provided with cash flows/projections on what you could/may/might earn whilst a franchisee. You need to be absolutely clear on what the figures show, where the figures came from and that they are showing the full picture. Ask the franchisor whether they are from an existing franchisee and, if so, in what territory. Bear in mind the dynamics of different territories – London figures are highly unlikely to be the same as a town in Yorkshire. Find out whether the franchisee whose figures have been used in the cash flows has any expenditure which is not included and where this particular franchisee sits in the performance of the network – if they are the top performer in the network ask for a mid and lower end performer’s figures. If they are an average across the network dig deeper into how many franchisees figures were used and when the average was taken (think about this if your business is seasonal).

If they are not franchisee figures then whose are they and where have they come from? Ask if there are any circumstances where expenditure may be more – think about staffing and if you need assets such as equipment/vehicles that the other franchisee/figures have excluded. You must remember at all times that the figures given will contain non-reliance statements which try to seek to prevent you relying on them as will the franchise agreement. The franchise agreement may even go as far to say you have not been given any cash flows. If anything is particularly important to you on those cash flows i.e. that they contain all of the expenditure required ask the franchisor to confirm that fact in a side letter attaching the cash flows.


Ask everything possible about the model and what the franchisor’s future plans are?

Find out what the franchisor has in mind over the next one, two, five and 10 years. Are they looking to stay in this business indefinitely, are they developing any new systems, methods, products or services? What marketing campaigns and future plans for growth do they have? These matters are not binding on the franchisor, but at least you will know before you sign up an insight into their plans. Look at how passionate and excited they are about driving the franchise forward and consider how this will help you.

It is absolutely imperative you understand exactly how every aspect of the business works. You should be able to explain to your lawyer how the business works and how that fits with what is in the franchise agreement when asked. If there is anything you don’t know, no matter how small you need to find out.

Finally…
Don’t be afraid to ask all the questions that occur to you and are important to you. The franchisor’s reactions will give a good insight into what you can expect from your franchise relationship.
 

More information

For more information please contact our Franchise Law Department

For the full article on WorkingMums website click here

  587 Hits
587 Hits

Christmas Singalong raises £2000 for charity

mayoranddawnchorus
Pinney Talfourd's Christmas sing-along at  the Queens Theatre Hornchurch gets whole community into festive mood.
Pinney Talfourd once again teamed up with Queens Theatre Hornchurch in December to host ‘Christmas at the Queens’ – a lively free sing along event for the whole community.

Our fantastic local choir Dawn Chorus joined us to lead the crowd for a series of upbeat Christmas songs including “Let it Snow” and “Jingle Bells” before the Mayor of Havering Brian Eagling joined the stage to say a few words and announce the raffle alongside Managing Partner of Pinney Talfourd, Philip Cockram.

This was a free event but the charity raffle on the day and generous donations raised just over £2,000 in aid of the Queens Theatre charitable trust and Pinney Talfourd’s own charity of the year ‘Bertie’s Battle’. Local businesses rallied to support the event by donating some fabulous prizes from champagne to a signed Tracey Emin print! The full list of gifts is below with acknowledgements. Funds raised are divided equally between the two charities.

This event has attracted a full house every year and this year was no different. Local businesses, Councillors, the community and also a number of our clients checked in for this festive celebration. Many clients with transport difficulties were taken as guests, ensuring that Christmas is not a lonely time after all.

Teas, coffees and cakes were on offer courtesy of Pinney Talfourd after the event to refresh those vocal chords, providing an opportunity to meet new faces and make new friends. Thank you to the Queens Theatre Club volunteers who helped to serve refreshments.

If you would like to find out more about the Queens Theatre Club or enquire about any performances please contact the Box Office on 01708 443333.

If you would like to find out more about this event or Pinney Talfourd’s services please contact 01708 229444.

Finally, everybody at Pinney Talfourd would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a happy new year.

Our generous raffle donors

1. £50 Marks & Spencer Gift Voucher
Donated by Lloyds Bank, 0345 3000000

2. John Lewis Hamper
Donated by Waitrose in Upminster, 01708 224444

3. Meal for 2 at Mandarin Palace, Ilford
Donated by Mandarin Palace, Ilford 020 8550 7661

4. Luxury Christmas hamper
Donated by Pinney Talfourd Solicitors, 01708 229444

5. Red Carpet Peel Treatment
Donated by Aesthetics of Essex in Upminster, 01708 225555

6. The Halo Gift Voucher
Donated by The Halo in Upminster, 01708 223998

7. Scented Candle Set
Donated by Poetic Design, Upminster, 01708 222213

8. Floral basket
Donated by Floral Affairs, Upminster, 01708 640267

9. Shellac/ full set of nail extensions from HMQ Nails
Donated by HMQ Nails in Cranham, 01708 259 685

10. A manicure and pedicure treatment from HMQ Nails
Donated by HMQ Nails in Cranham, 01708 259 685

11. Bottle of Champagne
Donated by ETC Construction, 020 7987 1223

12. Specially selected bottle of Wine
Donated by Shenfield Wines, Shenfield, 01708 204899

13. Two tickets to a Queen’s Theatre production (excl panto)
Donated by Queens Theatre Hornchurch, 01708 443333

14. Wine and Chocolates
Donated by Queen’s Theatre Club

15. £200 legal services voucher and a bottle of wine
Donated by Pinney Talfourd Solicitors, 01708 229444
This can be redeemed against any legal service including wills, family advice and commercial services.

16. “Reach Out for Fruit”, a signed Tracey Emin print
Donated by Brandler Galleries
, Coptfold Road, Brentwood 01277 222269
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1764 Hits

Ice Rink at Shenfield Fayre raises thousands for SNAP

keeleyandfamily
Pinney Talfourd sponsored the ice rink at Shenfield Fayre to help raise thousands for SNAP.

Pinney Talfourd co-sponsored the popular new ice rink at Shenfield Christmas Fayre on 29 November.

With our Brentwood office being only a stone’s throw from Shenfield High Street, we were delighted to be invited to join the event and help to make the ice rink a reality. The event took place on Sunday 29 November and raised money for the Mayor’s charity of the year SNAP (Special Needs and Parents).

Pinney Talfourd joined forces with another local firm Shawbrook Bank to get the ice rink up and running in front of Shenfield Common alongside an abundance of festive stalls including Shenfield Wine Company’s wine tasting stall, Shenfield High School’s craft stall, jewellery, home furnishings, face painting and various food stalls.

Staff on the stand donned their pinneys to offer a choice of flavoured ‘Pinney Pretzels’ to passers-by and skaters. Donations were given in exchange for these tasty treats to help towards the fundraising pot which totalled over £5,500 by the end of the event.

Catherine Polli, Head of Client Services said “At Pinney Talfourd we love to get involved in local community events.  We chose to sponsor the rink to ensure last year’s vision of making it bigger and better became a reality. It was such a unique opportunity and it gave us a chance to meet the local community face to face in a fun environment."

With such a fantastic turnout, Pinney Talfourd are already looking forward to next year. 



Visitors having fun on the ice rink and the Pinney team ready to serve their Pinney Pretzels.


If you would like to find out more about our community events programme please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 



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972 Hits

Christmas Singalong at the Queens Theatre

lowrescarols
Pinney Talfourd presents a Christmas sing-along at  the Queens Theatre Hornchurch - and you're invited.

Friday 11 December
11am – 1pm
Queens Theatre Hornchurch

Pinney Talfourd has once again teamed up with Queens Theatre Hornchurch to host ‘Christmas at the Queens’ on Friday 11 December (11am – 1pm).

This event has attracted a full house every year with guests including local businesses and councillors.

We are delighted that the Dawn Chorus have once again agreed to join us in singing a range of upbeat Christmas songs including “Let it Snow” and “Jingle Bells”. The Mayor of Havering will also be joining in the fun and say a few words at the end of the event.

Whilst free there will be a raffle in aid of the Queens Theatre charitable trust and Pinney Talfourd’s own charity of the year ‘Bertie’s Battle’. Local businesses have rallied to support the event by donating some fabulous prizes again this year for the raffle which in previous years have included champagne, restaurant vouchers and even a limited edition art print.

Finally, after all the excitement you are welcome to stay for a drink, mince pies and cupcakes courtesy of Pinney Talfourd.

Book a place

Booking is now open and filling up fast so call the Queens Theatre Box Office on 01708 443333 to reserve your space early.

P.S. Christmas jumpers and Santa hats are welcome!

 

 

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702 Hits

New Franchisee Support and Networking Group

We would like to invite you to our first Franchisee Support and Networking Group meeting in November.
 

Wednesday 25 November
6pm – 8pm
Pinney Talfourd Solicitors
54 Station Road, Upminster, Essex RM14 2TU

We are pleased to invite you to our first Franchisee Support and Networking Group meeting.

The meeting will be hosted by Amy Leite. Amy is an Associate Solicitor at Pinney Talfourd and has specialised in franchise matters exclusively for franchisees for several years.

Amy will be joined by Paul Strelitz, a franchise barrister from Hardwicke.

This meeting will be an opportunity for franchisees to network with other local franchisees, as well as a chance to share experiences and discuss any issues currently being faced by franchisees and ideas or ways to resolve them.

We will hold Group meetings on a quarterly basis going forward. At each meeting, Amy and Paul will give a brief presentation on franchisee related topics. Members will also have a chance to request specific topics or issues be dealt with at future meetings.

At the first meeting, Amy and Paul will be talking to the Group about territorial rights and encroachment.

Book a place

Please rsvp in order to secure your place at this free event. Contact Amy on 01708 229 444.


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791 Hits

Ten Common Debt Recovery Mistakes

StephenE
Stephen Eccles reveals the ten most common mistakes business owners make when it comes to tackling debtors, and what to do instead.
 
Stephen Eccles heads up the award winning Dispute Resolution department at Pinney Talfourd Solicitors. He is a seasoned expert and also a recommended lawyer by Legal 500 UK 2015 on debt recovery issues. Below he reveals the ten most common mistakes business owners make when it comes to tackling debtors and advises on the best course of action.

1. Failing to have a credit policy

When a company provides goods or services before receiving payment, it is essentially the same as handing over cash. For this reason it is vital for cash flow and ultimately the survival of your businesses to be able to predict when you are likely to get paid and the cost of ensuring that this happens. This begins with having a credit policy.
By gathering the same types of information from each customer, it is possible to attribute different risk levels to each and adjust your payment terms accordingly. Your credit policy provides uniformity of terms for each type of customer you have and ensures compliance with regulations. Without a credit policy you are at risk not only of losing money, but also of breaching consumer protection regulations. If you treat some consumers more favourably than others without proper rationale, you could even fall foul of discrimination legislation.

2. Not having enough information about your debtor

Before you enter into any new business relationship, it is highly advisable to undertake ‘due diligence’ at the outset. This means you should try to gain as much knowledge as possible about your new customer’s ability to pay as is reasonable, depending on the size of the transaction. If dealing with consumers, it is also advisable to gather information relating to their employment status, their home ownership status, other financial commitments and whether they have had county court judgments or issues with debt repayments in the past. This can be done by carrying out a credit check. If dealing with businesses Stephen advises that you know what type of business organisation you are dealing with. It could be a limited company, partnership, limited liability partnership or an individual. Surprisingly many clients do not know this when they come to us.

3. Being inflexible and failing to review terms

While it is of course vital to the survival of the business to have a credit policy, which you send out with your terms of business at the start of your relationship with your customers, it is also very important to learn from experience. With time, you will begin to identify and profile the types of customers you have who are high risk and those who are low risk. You can then tailor the availability of credit to each type of customer accordingly. Some of your debtors may have genuine cashflow issues but otherwise be prompt payers, so it is important that this is taken into consideration.

Businesses should review their credit policies to ensure that they remain relevant and effective for their business. Businesses change, economies strengthen and weaken, and there can be differing demands on cash flow. If you do not adapt your policy having learned from mistakes you have made in the past, or tailor to the changing needs of your business, you could end up in serious financial difficulty.

4. Ignoring the costs of debt recovery

Before you embark on a campaign to recover a debt from a customer, it is vital to evaluate the costs that you will incur in doing so. Obtaining a judgment in the county court may only be the start of the process. Enforcing a debt can also be costly so it is worth weighing up the likely expenditure against the size of the debts or you may end up losing even more money.

5. Not complying with regulations

There are numerous regulations that businesses must adhere to when seeking to recover debts from consumers. Overly aggressive or persistent demands may also constitute criminal activity contrary to the Prevention of Harassment Act. As such, in order to avoid penalties, you must ensure that your policy does not break the law.

6. Failing to follow up

A robust credit policy must also be structured; your debt recovery staff should be able to follow a procedure to ensure that your debtors are contacted consistently. If you demonstrate persistence, late payers will soon learn that they cannot just ignore the debt. Decide how long you will continue to contact them until they pay, and when you will pursue formal recovery proceedings.

7. Only using one means of communication

Letters and emails can often be enough to get some debtors to pay, but some of your debtors may require a more personal approach. Telephone calls are an effective way of getting your debtor to provide information to you, and it is much harder to ignore someone when you are speaking directly to them. In other cases, reminders via text messages can also be effective but again this will depend on the profile of the debtor you are dealing with.

8. Having out-of-date customer records

Out-of-date information about your customers can lead you to assess them as a lower risk than they may be, so it is worth making sure that you keep a record of their ability and willingness to pay on each occasion so that you are not caught out later on. If you do have to take court action, you will need their correct address and contact details for service of court documents.

9. Failing to undertake due diligence with companies

In much the same way that consumer customers’ details need to be up to date, it is important to ensure that you are contracting with the right business. Companies can often have group subsidiaries, so it is vital that you have a binding contract with the right company, that this company has the means to pay, and that it is the correct company to pursue should payment not be forthcoming.

10. Not understanding your customers’ payment processes

Each of your customers will have a different procedure for paying invoices. It may not be entirely straightforward, and may require the authorisation of several individuals before payment can be made. Therefore, it is important to know the names of the people responsible for this process so that you are not unnecessarily sending reminders or increasingly forceful demands at a time when payment is winding its way to your account, albeit slowly.

Find Out More

For more information on credit policies or any other debt recovery matter, contact Stephen Eccles in our Dispute Resolution Department who will be happy to discuss your options.

Contact us on 01708 229 444 or click here to visit our Dispute Resolution page.

This article was written by Stephen Eccles, Partner and Head of our Dispute Resolution Department at Pinney Talfourd Solicitors. The contents of this article are for the purposes of general awareness only. They do not purport to constitute legal or professional advice. Specific legal advice should be taken on each individual matter. This article is based on the law as at November 2015.

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439 Hits

Pilot Franchises - What you need to know

fireworks
Pilot franchises - rocketing to the moon or fizzling back down to earth? November is the month for fireworks and we look at what you need to know about pilot franchises.
 

The risks of pilot franchises

Like the lighting of your first firework on bonfire night you never quite know whether a pilot franchise will turn out to be beyond your best expectations, a slow burner, or simply fizzle out before it really gets going.

The element of risk with a pilot franchise is higher than your average franchise. After all it will be a business which is untried and untested as a franchise system. It may have been running successfully as an independently owned business for many years but that does not mean that the business and the proposed franchisor will adapt to franchising.

Reason for pilot operations

Businesses generally pilot their business model to see whether it will work as a franchise set up before franchising it. Not all franchisors recruit pilot franchisees to run the pilot operation. They will often use one of their own company owned outlets but run it as if it were an independent franchisee.

Pilot franchises are the “guinea pig”. They allow the franchisor to test it out, fine tune the business method and system and see what, if anything, needs to changed, improved or further considered before the system is properly franchised.

It also gives the proposed franchisor and those running it the chance to see whether franchising is for them or not. There are many considerations to take account of when a business is deciding to franchise, such as territories and locations, the type of franchisee they want to have on board, what support, training and guidance they will have to provide, marketing methods and how the brand, standards and goodwill will be maintained across a much larger network of businesses.

It should be viewed as a learning opportunity for both the pilot franchisee and the franchisor. There will need to be much closer discussion between the two as to what is working, what is not and how to overcome any short comings.

Reward and probably a bit more risk

The fact that the pilot franchisee will often be closely involved with the franchisor in ironing out any issues does not mean they will not have strict obligations to the franchisor and be subject to the terms of a franchise agreement like any other franchisee. They will.

However, the pilot franchisee has a chance to negotiate these initial pilot agreement terms much more strongly than any other franchisee who is signing up to a tried and tested franchise.

Pilot franchisees must be aware that pilot franchises are often for one year or two, in comparison to a full five year franchise. At the end of the term of the pilot agreement if the franchisor decides to continue franchising and agrees to offer the pilot franchisee a full franchise agreement (which is usually discretionary) the full franchise agreement terms will very much be “up for grabs” again.

The pilot franchisee will usually be sent a full franchise agreement – probably on the then standard terms of the franchise agreement and it is likely to look very different to the terms of the pilot agreement.

The franchisor is also likely to want to retain the pilot franchisee who, by this time, has knowledge of the system and can assist with the welcoming of new franchisees. However, the negotiating position with regards to the terms of the full franchise agreement may not be as strong for the franchisee, especially if the business has proved to franchise well and has resulted in a good business.

As with all commercial contracts the terms are negotiable. How much so will largely depend on how much bargaining power the parties have. A franchisor with a good business model that has piloted well and a franchisee who does not want to lose the business they have spent a year or two developing means that the franchisee may not have the same bargaining power as they had pre-pilot.

On the other hand, if the pilot business hasn’t worked out as well as it was hoped, the franchisee may decide to cut their losses after the expiry of the pilot franchise. In this scenario the hope is that as a result of initial negotiations the initial fee was relatively small.

Find Out More

If you are involved in, or considering, a pilot franchise contact our Franchise Department who will be happy to discuss your agreement.

Support & Networking Group

If you are a franchisee please join our newly launched Franchisee Support & Networking Group, aimed specifically at franchisees looking for ideas, support and help on any issues. The event will be hosted by Amy and leading franchise barrister Paul Strelitz from Hardwicke. Click here to find out more.


The contents of this article are for the purposes of general awareness only. They do not purport to constitute legal or professional advice. Specific legal advice should be taken on each individual matter. This article is based on the law as at November 2015.

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1004 Hits

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