Religion v Rights: should homosexual activity continue to be illegal in T&T?

Saturday, 8 November 2014

Tuesday, 4 November 2014

Salary and benefit payments during business closure

Q: If a business is closing down and I am about to go on maternity leave do they still have to pay me as well as I have two weeks’ vacation pending do they have to pay me for that as well?


A: You have to receive your salary/wages as long as they can afford it. This all depends on how the business is closing down and then the priority of debt payments. There are a few terms involved in this process; i.e. insolvency (compulsory or voluntary), receivership, liquidation, bankruptcy and administration. So it depends on the category which the company falls under when closing down.

Winding-up
Salaries have secondary priority to the government debts (taxes, NIS, etc.). According to the Companies Act 1995, as amended-s.435(1)(b):
all wages or salary (whether or not earned wholly or in part by way of commission or for time or piece work) of any employee, not being a director, in respect of services rendered to the company during four months next before the relevant date;

Bankruptcy & Insolvency
If the company is bankrupt, wages have 4th place priority according to The Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act, 2006 - s.127(d):
excluding severance, claims for wages, salaries, commissions or compensation of any employee for services rendered during the six months immediately preceding the bankruptcy, together with disbursements properly incurred by a traveling salesman in and about the bankrupt’s business, during the same period, so as not to exceed such amount as may be prescribed by Order in each case;



The law is not explicit as to whether unused vacation and maternity leave are included in debt payments, but it's a unique matter that I would love to put to the test.  

Friday, 31 October 2014

Law students: How to specialise in an area of law

Q: How do I specialize in a specific area of law?


A: In law school we're taught all of the main subjects, but specializing in one or two areas is a great thing because it makes you a Master in that field. This can be done in 4 ways (all of these are what I did):

v  Do a first degree in your chosen area before doing the Graduate LL.B./G.D.L./C.P.E. (In America I started off doing business… back when Corporate law was my focus, but after moving to London, I identified a niche area to bring back home)

v  Do specific electives during the LL.B./G.D.L./C.P.E. (I finished my business degree and went to law school and began to focus on employment law)

v  Do a Master's degree in the area (I also did modules in Human Rights and Immigration as they both relate to Employment)

v  Focus your legal career on your specific area(s) (I started a boutique consulting firm that focuses only on Employment issues www.jbemploymentconsulting.com)


I don't trust lawyers who claim that they do everything... recently, an employment matter came to me where after taking $40,000 from his clients to send 4 letters, this south lawyer told the clients that he did not know what next to do beyond sending those letters. 99% of lawyers give the rest a bad name. 

Any Lawyer can choose to specialize in any of the following areas:
  • Administrative law
  • Advertising law (a real niche that needs someone in Trinidad and Tobago)
  • Animal law
  • Antitrust law (or competition law)
  • Aviation law
  • Banking law
  • Business law (or commercial law); also commercial litigation
  • Communications law
  • Constitutional law
  • Construction law
  • Consumer law
  • Contract law
  • Copyright law
  • Corporate law (or company law), also corporate compliance law and corporate governance law
  • Criminal law
  • Cyber law
  • Employment law 
  • Energy law
  • Entertainment law
  • Environmental law
  • Family law
  • Human rights law
  • Immigration law
  • Insurance law
  • Intellectual property law
  • International law
  • Labour law
  • Land Law
  • Maritime law
  • Military law
  • Juvenile law
  • Music law
  • Patent law
  • Poverty law
  • Privacy law
  • Sports law
  • Tax law
  • Tort law
  • Trademark law