General Interest News
Maples support for BRAVE
Maples Solicitors LLP are proud to be sponsoring Gary Johannes with his charity bike ride across Vietnam. Gary and his son, Christopher, will cycle over 600 kilometres across Vietnam in October 2010 in order to try and raise over £10,000 for the spinal unit at Stoke Mandeville Hospital. In order to help Gary train for the event, Maples have sponsored his bike and accessories.
Behind this charity bike ride is an incredible story concerning Gary’s son Christopher. Several years ago Christopher was involved in an accident, which led to him breaking his back in 3 places and compressing the spinal cord. The initial diagnosis was that Christopher would not walk again.
Whilst showing great courage and determination, Christopher has been able to walk again but this was probably only possible with the help and support of everybody at Stoke Mandeville Hospital. Understandably, Gary and Christopher want to give something back to the Hospital by raising as much money as possible on this charity bike ride.
For more details and information about BRAVE please click on the link below:-
We wish Gary and Christopher all the best with their training and every success with the bike ride across Vietnam.
Please support this worthy cause.
Alzheimer's Society Cupcake Day
We are pleased to say that a total of £200 was raised at the Alzheimer's Society Cupcake Day held at our offices on Thursday 14th June. Thank you to everyone who attended and donated to this worthy cause!
Newly Appointed Partner
Maples Solicitors LLP are delighted to announce Chris Ayre became a Partner of the firm from 1st January 2021.
Managing Partner Mrs Anita Toal said “Chris has been a loyal member of the team since he joined us as a fresh-faced teenager and office junior many years ago. Over the years, Chris has increasingly taken on more and more responsibility and has been responsible for most of the day to day management of the firm for some time. Chris’s support of and commitment to Maples has been consistently outstanding-never more so in 2020. We hope Chris will help the firm continue to flourish for many years to come”.
Chris commented “Maples has been like a home to me for nearly 20 years so I was thrilled when the very unexpected offer of Partnership was made. 2020 was a challenging year for everyone and let’s hope 2021 can be the start of a new brighter future”.
Maples supports Alzheimer's Society's Cupcake Day
On 14th June 2018 Maples Solicitors LLP are pleased to be taking part in the Alzheimer’s Society’s Cupcake Day.
Tea, coffee and cupcakes will be served from 10:00am until 12:00pm and all donations received will go to the Alzheimer’s Society to help fight dementia and create a lasting change for all those affected by it.
At the same time, Maples will also be running a free Wills, Lasting Powers of Attorney and Care Home Planning clinic so that whilst you are in the office you may take the opportunity to discuss any of these with one of the Private Client Team with no obligation to commit. You can use the time to raise any questions you may have about making a Will, who you could appoint as Executors, whether you need a Power of Attorney, how a Power of Attorney works, or how you can plan for possible Care Home fees, for example.
Maples hope to see their existing clients join them for the coffee morning and very much look forward to meeting new people- everyone is welcome!
If you would like to discuss any matters in relation to Wills, Lasting Powers of Attorney or Care Home Planning related matters prior to the coffee morning then please contact one of the lawyers in our private client team:-
Jane Mawer- email@example.com
Jamie Dobbs- firstname.lastname@example.org
Faye Blair- email@example.com
Or telephone the office on 01775 722261 and ask to speak with one of the team.
ABH & GBH (by Georgina Maplethorpe, Student)
I am Georgina Maplethorpe, a student from Spalding High School, for my two weeks of work experience I chose to come to Maples Solicitors. I have really enjoyed my experience and I am very glad that I chose here as my placement as it has really benefitted me in many various ways. I have learnt a great deal which will then go on to help me decide whether to further my education in law and I have also had the opportunity to work with loads of friendly, helpful people and try out different jobs within the industry.
During my time at Maples Solicitors, I have had an excellent insight to experiencing the atmosphere within a police station and life in the office. While on work experience, I have learnt about different aspects of the law and in particular looked at ABH and GBH.
ABH and GBH are abbreviations for Actual Bodily Harm and Grievous Bodily Harm. I have chosen to research in more detail and write about these two offences as I have previously read a case involving them during my work experience; this is what has interested me in them.
What is ABH? ABH is committed when a person assaults another, thereby causing actual bodily harm. Bodily harm itself means, any hurt calculated to interfere with the health or comfort of the victim. The harm is not necessarily serious but it would need to be more than a shove which would remain as something known as common assault. This offence carries a maximum penalty of five years’ imprisonment and/or an unlimited fine not exceeding the statutory maximum. If someone is being charged for the first time it is unlikely that they will go to prison so a fine would be the usual outcome. Again, if the offender has previous convictions or if they were proven to have had a particular motivation for the attack, specifically if it is racially motivated this could however lead to a prison sentence.
GBH is a much more serious offence than ABH. There are two types of GBH, with intent and without intent. GBH is the unlawful and malicious wounding of a person. For this offence there needs to be really serious harm or the assault needs to have resulted in the wounding of another person. GBH without intent would result in a maximum sentence of five years and GBH with intent can in some cases result in life imprisonment but in reality sentences, over ten years are extremely rare. In the case of GBH the option of just a fine is not provided even if it is a first time offence. Also in the case of GBH it is often likely that bail will be refused due to the violent nature of the offence.
It can sometimes be difficult to determine which offence has been committed; this depends on the injuries of the victim. Another difficulty would occur when prosecuting the offender; the most common defence for these offences is one of self defence. To rely on this defence, there must have been an imminent attack and any actions used in defence must be reasonable and proportionate. There is no law that a man must wait to be struck before striking in self defence. In the event that there is no evidence of guilty mind, the charge is either reduced or dropped.
Insight into Spalding Magistrates Court
My name is Szymon Ratynski and I am a Spalding Grammar School student. As my work experience I chose to go to Maples Solicitors as I heard that here, I will be given the opportunity of going to the Court. Going to the Court has proved to be great fun as well as a great insight towards the life of Solicitors and the Magistrates. The cases were not as serious as murder but, some were assault or theft and was very interesting to me as I have always wondered what it is like in Court and to be honest I was not disappointed. The pressure and the worry is on everyone, especially the person being prosecuted as the atmosphere and procedure is very tense as they await for their sentence to be put to them.
As you enter the Magistrates Court there is a security check right at the entrance. If you possess a bag you will be asked to open it and show it to the security guard, and any coins or mobiles phones will be put in a tray. Then you will have to go through some sensors and if you BEEP, which you must hope not, then you will be searched. After this you sit down in the lobby and wait to be called in by someone. If you are just coming to watch and are not someone getting sentenced if the Court is already on you can go and enter quietly. Remember to bow to the Judge as that is very respectful.
When the defendant enters the Court room they will be sat on a small bench just in front of the Solicitors and the Magistrates The person will be prosecuted and the charges read out and if they have a solicitor, they will defend them. Of course a person guilty can represent themselves in Court if they want to.
If the defendant makes an early guilty plea this will usually end up with the sentence being less severe. I have really enjoyed my time in Court and I now know how everything runs. Now I know that this is the career I want to take on and become a solicitor. The best part in Court, in my opinion is when the solicitor of the defendant speaks as they have to point out the smallest details, because every detail can help the guilty decrease his sentence. In the Magistrates Court most sentences ended up with Community working hours and fines. I have also noticed that the bigger the persons wage the bigger the fine will be as different sums effect different people! Although the Solicitors can affect the sentence the Magistrates have the last say, so regardless of what you feel what the Magistrate says goes. In the near future I hope to end up in Court but not as a guilty person getting sentenced but, as a Defence Solicitor!
At the end the Defendant will be asked to go wait in the waiting room for the paper work to be done. They will then sign of some sheets and documents and go and serve the sentence and pay fines. They will be asked to return to Court after a certain time if they still have not paid the fines or completed e.g. Community hours. Some cases in the Court can be moved to a later date if the person charged is foreign and cannot speak English to an understandable level. As they will need the help of and interpreter.