News

The ruling follows a request for advice from The Netherlands about three gay refugees seeking asylum from Uganda, Sierra Leone and Senegal

Anger at Italy foreign staff rights

A Scottish university lecturer working in Italy pleaded for EU help today against a bizarre Italian move to wipe the legal rights of foreign workers from the statute book.

Treasury faces £500m battle over stamp duty claims

The Treasury is facing potential legal claims of at least £500m after the High Court let companies share costs in seeking repayment of stamp duties on share issues.

Changes to EU law mean cut in pension income for men

Men approaching retirement face a substantial cut in their pension income if changes to EU law get the green light.

Business Diary: Crozier's run-in with the law

Poor old Adam Crozier. His colleagues rather dropped the new chief executive of ITV in it during the period before he took up his post.

Government vow to fight 'benefit tourism' move

The Government today vowed to fight the European Commission over efforts by Brussels to lift British social security restrictions designed to curb "benefit tourism".

Business Diary: A crack in Lego's brick wall

Bad news for Lego, the Danish toy manufacturer with which the world has grown up. Its bricks – specifically the most basic 4x2 block – have long been protected by European trademark law, preventing rivals from offering similar products. Now the European Court of Justice has upheld a complaint from Canada's Mega Brands, the maker of Mega Bloks, that trademark protection can't be extended to a shape in this way. There's no room for sentimentality in the courtroom.

EU judges rule out Lego trademark

The Lego brick, one of the most instantly recognised toys in the world, cannot be trademarked, European judges ruled today.

David Prosser: Flying into more trouble on airlines

Outlook Sooner or later, the European Commission is going to have to think again about the complicated and often draconian rules governing what airlines must do in the event of delays or cancellations of their flights. The airline industry has just been buoyed by a High Court victory, which will require the European Court of Justice (ECJ) to look again at new rules it effectively introduced last year, but the system is a mess.

Maastricht marijuana is for locals only, rules EU

No drugs please, you're foreigners.

EU ruling revives Telefonica's Vivo bid

Telefonica's attempt to assume control of Brazil's leading mobile phone operator, Vivo, edged closer to a conclusion yesterday after the European Court of Justice ruled against a key hurdle to the takeover.

Mobile telcos lose roaming challenge

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) yesterday upheld laws forcing mobile operators to cut roaming charges in the face of a legal challenge from Vodafone, O2, T-Mobile and Orange. The regulations, first passed by the European Commission in 2007, cap call charges at 49 euro cents (41p) per minute for making a call and 24 euro cents per minute for receiving one while travelling abroad, with further reductions due in 2011.

High Court lets Treasury off the hook on VAT refunds, but appeals loom

Ministers are are breathing a sigh of relief after a landmark High Court ruling appeared to indicate that the Treasury will not have to find billions of pounds to pay additional compensation to businesses it has accepted are owed refunds of value added tax (VAT).

Terror suspects' wives can claim benefits, EU judges rule

Treasury restrictions on State handouts to the wives of terrorist suspects are illegal, European judges ruled today.

'Great Hamster of Alsace' blocks march of business

It is only 10in long and spends half the time hibernating, but it could still block the march of business in one corner of France. No wonder it is named the "Great Hamster of Alsace".

Mini porn shows lose tax exempt battle

Sex shops showing films in cubicles lost their battle today to charge the same lower VAT rate as ordinary cinemas.

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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes': US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food served at diplomatic dinners

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes'

US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food
Radio Times female powerlist: A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

Inside the Radio Times female powerlist
Endgame: James Frey's literary treasure hunt

James Frey's literary treasure hunt

Riddling trilogy could net you $3m
Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

What David Sedaris learnt about the world from his fitness tracker
Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Second-holiest site in Islam attracts millions of pilgrims each year
Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

The big names to look for this fashion week

This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering