This week’s top 15 legal briefings – 17th February 2014

Jonathan Ames

Smokers reckon they are a fairly persecuted lot – just about the only place they can puff away these days is in the garden shed, but even then only if the family dog doesn’t wander in. Cigarettes have long been banned from the workplace (remember those smoking rooms with wallpaper that bore a striking resemblance to a diseased lung?). Now it seems even electronic fags are causing personnel departments and in-house legal teams to take notice. Our commentators from law firm Shoosmiths point out that some 1.3 million Britons have taken up battery-powered e-cigarettes, but there is currently no conclusive medical opinion on how safe their vapours are for non-smokers. So, say the lawyers, the ‘secondary vapour’ issue could run and run in employment law departments. Click here for more information.

No matter how much of an international pariah a country can be, redemption almost always seems to be possible – South Africa and even pre-Arab Spring Libya being cases in point. Usually, the old chestnuts of commerce and trade lie behind the rehabilitative process, with Iran now seemingly preparing itself to be invited back to the equivalent of a few global dinner parties. Barristers at London’s Three Raymond Buildings analyse the mood around the existing sanctions regime – aimed at preventing Iran from joining the nuclear weapons club – following president Hassan Rouhani’s recent star turn at the Davos World Economic forum. They lawyers acknowledge that Rouhani clearly wants to thaw relations with the west, but will his charm offensive cut much ice with the US and Britain? Click here for more information.

Glee is a US television teen drama about a high-school singing club, complete with all the nauseating Americana story lines one can imagine from the genre. ‘Glee Clubs’ is the registered trademark for a series of stand-up comedy venues launched in Birmingham some 20 years ago and now in Cardiff, Oxford and Nottingham. Club owner Comic Enterprises has, since the launch the television programme in 2009, got a bit narked that punters in the market for rollicking and cutting-edge comedy were confused, thinking its clubs were somehow associated with the saccharine sweet telly programme. Law firm Wragge & Co was instructed to take on 20th Century Fox TV, and its lawyers relate here how it all played out. Click here for more information.

Top five briefings by law firm 
DLA Piper: Searching for real-estate investment: investing in UK core citiesDownload
Mills & Reeve: Litigation privilege — not so easy to come byDownload
Shoosmiths: E-cigarettes in the workplace — no smoke without fireDownload
Taylor Wessing: Determination of claim is within ‘insolvency exception’ to UK jurisdictional rulesDownload
Walker Morris: Breach of contract — when not paying the price is a penaltyDownloadMore law firms

Top five briefings by practice area 
Banking & finance:
Financial Services Regulatory Update — 7 February 2014
Company/commercial: Specific performance of contracts entered into prior to UK administration proceedingsDownload
Employment: Use it or lose it — EAT refuses to imply term requiring payment for unused flexitimeDownload
Intellectual Property: High Court holds that 20th Century Fox’s Glee infringes Comic Enterprises’ trademark for a logo including the words ‘the Glee Club’Download
Litigation/dispute resolution: Is your WA lease destroyed on a transfer? — The Primewest appealDownloadMore practice areas

Top five briefings by region 
Asia & Australasia: Chinese outbound approval requirements relaxedDownload
Middle East: International sanctions — is Iran now an investment opportunity?Download
Offshore: Governance of Cayman hedge funds — prime brokerage mattersDownload
UK and Europe: Corporate crime update: EU Anti-Corruption ReportDownload
US & the Americas : IRS issues long-promised guidance following Historic Boardwalk decisionDownloadMore regions