Author Archives: admin

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HMRC: how to spot an online fraudster

The taxman and KPP Accountants tell customers how to spot an online fraudster in the run up to the online Self Assessment deadline.

It’s the time of year when HMRC sends out more than one million Self Assessment emails reminding customers of the fast approaching 31 January deadline for online returns.  It’s also the time of year that scammers see the opportunity to cash in on one of the most phished brands in the world – yes you’ve guessed it, HMRC.

Luckily HMRC has a strict yet easy to understand protocol in place that tells its customers what to expect when HMRC communicates with them via email.  And with 85% of all 2013/14 Self Assessments completed online, it’s incredibly important that HMRC does everything in its power to raise customer awareness on how to spot a fraudulent email.

What you need to look out for

The protocol states that emails sent by HMRC to customers will never contain or ask for the following information:

  • Personal or financial information of any kind; this includes the customer’s full address, full postcode, Unique Tax Reference (UTR), or any bank details
  • Financial information that refers to specific figures, tax computations or particular facts about a customer
  • Email attachments or web links
  • An offer of a repayment or refund
  • A request to send a response to a personal HMRC email address.

HMRC has also reminded its customers that they have a part to play in keeping their personal information secure by updating their web browser and anti-virus software to the latest versions, and keeping their passwords safe and changing them regularly.

Stay alert

Jonathan Lloyd White, Director of Security and Information and Departmental Security Officer (DSO), HMRC, said:

“We are committed to customers’ online security, but the methods that fraudsters use to get information are constantly changing, so people need to be alert. When using our online services, I would urge all our customers to be vigilant, and remember that HMRC will never send an email to ask for your personal information or password, or include a link or attachment. We want to help you stay safe online. Visit for more advice.”

Personal tax accounts

2016 has also seen HMRC start the year with the launch of the Personal Tax Account, which they’ll roll out during the coming months; this will give customers a safe and secure way to communicate with HMRC through messaging and web chat via their own Personal Tax Account.

If you’re worried about the legitimacy of an email you’ve received from HMRC, or would like general Self Assessment advice then please get in touch on 0141 345 2355 or email

– See more at:

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TV Exposure for RTLcooperative

james cahill

TV Exposure for the RTLcooperative

An opportunity arose to support and sponsor new snooker pro James Cahill, who will be playing in the World Championships in York over the coming days. The tournament is televised by TV companies from around the world but here at home the dear old BBC  will be broadcasting the tournament. Hopefully, you will be able to cheer on James Cahill and wish him luck from all of our members.

James will be sporting one of our badges on his vest as he graciously accepted sponsorship from us to help increase awareness of the RTLcooperative and promote the business ethos of business solidarity through cooperation.

Undoubtedly the highlight of the 2014/15 season for Cahill was a run to the last 16 of the UK Championship. After knocking out Mark King and Andrew Higginson, he scored a stunning 6-5 victory over Ding Junhui.

Cahill was hauled back from 5-1 to 5-5 by Ding, but made an excellent break of 56 in the deciding frame which proved a match-winner. He said: “In the last frame I expected him to win in one visit, but after he missed I played a solid frame. My family went through the emotions as much as I did.”

He then lost 6-2 to Mark Davis in the next round.

Cahill also beat John Higgins 4-2 in a televised match at the 2014 Paul Hunter Classic, reaching the last 32.

Cahill earned a place on snooker’s main tour for the first time by winning the 2013 European Under-21 Championship. He beat Ashley Carty 6-0 in the final in Serbia.

He comes from a snooker background as his mum Maria was a leading ladies player, and her sister Mandy was married to seven-time World Champion Stephen Hendry.

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Criminal Law Masterclass

Criminal Law Masterclass

A masterclass in criminal Law featuring :-

Ian Duguid QC

Double Jeopardy


Ian Duguid QC- Double Jeopardy





Donald findlay


Donald Findlay QC – Developing science and expert evidence




Alex Prentice QC – Pre trial publicity in the internet age

Frances McMenamin QC – Sexual Offences

John Keenan – Recent developments in Moorov

This event may be accredited for 5 hours cpd.

Lunch will be provided.

For info email Niall McCluskey at

Prince Philip Building, Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh , Nicolson Street Edinburgh GB – View Map

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A Guide To Instructing An Advocate in a Road Traffic Case

Category : Uncategorized

Advocates in road traffic casesA Guide To Instructing An Advocate in a Road Traffic Case

Who is best for your case?


The first thing you need to do is to find a solicitor who has the type of experience and knowledge that you can depend upon to source the right advocate for the job. Your choice of solicitor will often determine the  choice that you will be afforded. In general the more complicated and serious the case, the more likely you are to need a senior advocate or QC.


At Roadtrafficlaw we find that there are many so called, junior counsel, who have a vast range of experience and ability and who can be depended upon to deal with serious and complex cases.


What Factors Matter When Choosing an Advocate?

(1) Experience goes a long way, so seek out an advocate who has a great deal of court experience. Remember that trials experience may have been garnered as a solicitor as some Advocates have several years experience running their own firm prior to training to become an Advocate. Just because someone is a junior Advocate does not mean that they are young and inexperienced.


(2) What do you have to lose? The more valuable “the prize” the more you should invest in your defence team as like in every other walk of life you tend to get what you pay for.


(3) Where in the country is the case likely to be heard? You may want someone local to that area as this can reduce costs but also because that sometimes means that the particular advocate knows the personalities involved in your prosecution


(4) Are you willing and able to travel to meet the Advocate at Edinburgh High court or the instructing solicitor’s offices?  Are you willing to consult online using an online conferencing tool?


(5) What level of experience does the Advocate have in your particular type of case? Does he/she have a track record that you can review? (Often Advocates produce a list of the more serious cases that they have been involved in)

How do I know how senior or experienced an advocate is?

An advocate’s seniority is based on two elements, the number of years of qualification or when he/she was “called to the bar”’ and whether he or she has taken silk (become a QC). Most people are aware of what a Queen’s Counsel (QC) is. It is a mark of status that an advocate has been recognised as being particularly experienced in their chosen practise area.

At Roadtrafficlaw we have a strong working relationship with several advocates however even we require to speak to the  advocate’s clerks to discuss the case prior to agreeing who should act in the case. We need to discuss issues such as complexity, urgency, client’s needs/ resources, likely time that the case will take.

We need to discuss the fees and whether they will be on a fixed fee, lump sum basis (Preferred by many clients) or an hourly basis and the amount of work required. Arrangements for case consultations, locus attendances, expert reports and case discussions.

Generally speaking, the earlier the advocate is involved in a case the better for all concerned.




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How To Handle Negative Reviews

How To Handle Negative Reviews

How To Handle Negative Reviews

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Guard Your Online Rep!

Guard Your Online Rep!


RTLcooperative Members Now Have FREE Rep management carried out by Alice.

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Fergus Muirhead Warns About Telephone Scammers

Fergus Muirhead Financial Adviser







Fergus Muirhead Warns About Telephone Scammers

Telephone scammers seem to have become more active in recent weeks. They’ll call you telling you they are from your bank and that you’ve been the victim of a fraud then they’ll ask you to confirm lots of your personal information so that they can verify your details.

The best advice is simple advise and it doesn’t get much more simple than- Don’t tell them anything.

Don’t give away any unsolicited information over the phone. Be suspicious and check everything out.

“I got an email from my bank the other week with details of a new promotion they were running, similar to the Santander 123 account. you had to register with them in order to start accumulating points and there was a link on the email to allow you to register. There was something not quite right about the tone and wording of the email and that put me on high alert.”

I happened to be passing the bank later that day and when I went in to check it all out it turns out that it was a genuine email, and a genuine offer, and I was able to register and start to take part while I was in the branch.

So it was all much ado about nothing but always better to be safe than sorry I think. Always report any suspicious activity on your account or in emails from your bank and remember that they will never phone you out of the blue and ask for passwords or pin numbers. If you do get a call that you’re hot sure about then you should hang up and call your bank immediately with details of the call.

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Road Traffic Consultancy Ltd and Corporate Track Days

Road Traffic Consultancy Ltd and Corporate Track Days


Driver awareness packages


Road Traffic Consultancy Ltd fronted by ex Strathclyde Police Traffic Department Officer

Keith Hale offers a highly successful and quickly cost effective individually tailored or fleet driver safety and awareness packages all of which offer greater road safety and improved vehicle fuel efficiency, lower accident rates and reduced sickness rates and of course you will be less likely to collect those horrible fixed penalty tickets!


If you then wish you can use your tips and awareness gained through Road Traffic Consultancy Ltd on town/country and motorway roads on the race track, yes they are transferrable skills!


Road Traffic Consultancy Ltd can also due to their expertise offer in-house transport management packages to avoid the potential pit falls and liabilities of the Corporate Homicide (Scotland) Act  placed upon businesses now.


How Corporate Track Days started


Once your employees have undertaken this driver awareness training, or simply as a team building exercise or bonding day why not consider a Corporate Track Day, undertaking driving on at Knockhill Racing Circuit, their rally stage, go-cart racing track, 4×4 driving or even skid control sessions.


The beginning of the offering of corporate track days began with Road Traffic Consultancy’s desire to help those working in corporate offices and sales roles to have the chance to take to the track to “legally burn some rubber” or  just to “let of steam” perhaps following a successful full corporate year or even a quarter.



In conjunction with Knockhill Race Track in Fife Road Traffic Consultancy Ltd has entered into this particular concept for those in corporate positions.


Getting into Gear with Corporate Track Days


Test your ultimate driving skills with corporate track days.


If you are used to being behind a desk and want to express your daring side, then you can look at the track days in Scotland for more adventure.  These full day/half day’s out even allow you to take your own vehicle to the track, or rely on the track vehicles to race others to the finish line and for the final prize or that elusive “time”.


Whatever your goal or dream, a fun day of on the road, or a track/rally/4×4/skid control and racing experience awaits.


Preparing for the Track


If you are ready to get on the track, then there are many options:


You have the option of bringing your own car as a part of the race experience (Trotter Independent Trader vans need not apply) this allows you to test your own vehicle in legal conditions against the clock.


If you want to do this then Road Traffic Consultancy Ltd can direct you to specialist insurance providers, who for the appropriate premium will allow insurance cover on your own vehicle on the track as your standard insurance is not current for these purposes.



Bonuses of Track Days in Scotland


Enjoy even more with the track days in Scotland that are being introduced.


To top off the races it can be arranged for you to drive with the resident Knockhill racing circuit former Scottish Rally Championship driver who will be at the wheel.


Not only will you want to race against others in your team, but will use the tips provided to you in prior driver awareness sessions and if you wanted you would be able to race against Keith Hale on the track!


This adds into even more fun with the competitive nature while allowing everyone to enjoy the best of the races and team building.


If you are interested in taking up the challenge to improve your organisations driving standards and be looked upon as a leading training provider within your corporate field in today’s very competitive  market and are looking to be “That bit different from the rest” or even simply want to race against your colleagues on the track in a safe controlled environment then take that first step and call Keith on 07776138095 or email him at and get that first meeting set up.

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5 Tools For Measuring Your Online Presence

Category : Uncategorized

RTLcooperative Monitor Your Online Image

RTLcooperative Monitor Your Online Image

5 Tools For Measuring Your Online Presence

Google Analytics
Though experts on the topic have indicated that relying on just one of the tools that are available is short-sighted, there is no doubt that if you have to choose just one, Google Analytics is the most popular (and arguably the most useful) of all of them. It has the advantage of being free, simple, and tells clearly and plainly how people are coming to your site and what they’re doing there once they arrive. There’s more information available for those who really want to dig, and it is incredibly user friendly.

Google Alert
Another useful and easy method of seeing whether your brand is being mentioned online, as well as what is being said about it, is to set up a Google Alert about yourself. You’ll receive an email every time reference is made to you, and you’ll be able to see exactly what is being said. How often you receive alerts is entirely up to you, and at the same time that you’re checking for news about yourself, you can also plug in an alert about your area of expertise or your competition so that you know what’s going on with them too.

If you are a Twitter user, TweetBeep is a tool that you’ll find worthwhile. Much like Google Alerts, it provides you with a notification when a Twitter conversation mentions you, and lets you track those conversations. The alerts update hourly, so you can stay aware of developing issues, and the real-time aspect provides you with the opportunity to respond immediately.
Bitly gives you the opportunity to see whether people are clicking on the links that you’re providing in your web outreach. Whether you’re blogging, tweeting, posting web-based articles, or emailing, it provides real time measures and tracking tools so that you can determine which of the information you’ve provided is of the most use to your followers.

This tool provides a report that lists all of the online search engines, including video, and lets you know how many times your brand is showing up on each. The program includes Google, Twitter, YouTube, Digg, Flickr, Yahoo and more, making it possible to see and measure a wealth of information in a single glance.