***REGISTRATION DEADLINE APPROACHING AND PROGRAMME UPDATE****6th Annual Conference of the Partnership, LLP and LLC Law Forum, 14 September 2023 - registration now open



The 6th Annual Conference of the Partnership, LLP and LLC Law Forum will be held at Nottingham Law School on Thursday 14 September.

This conference provides a unique opportunity for those practising in, researching, teaching or otherwise with an interest in partnership or LLP law, practice or policy, to hear papers from leading practitioners, academics and policymakers.

Further details of the programme (including of speakers who are APP members) and registration are at https://www.ntu.ac.uk/about-us/events/events/2023/9/6th-annual-conference-of-the-partnership,-llp-and-llc-law-forum. Advance registration is required and early registration is recommended as the venue has limited capacity.

We look forward to welcoming you on the day. 

Elspeth Berry

Associate Professor of Law


Partnership Law Conference - hold the date, and call for papers

Short article on the financial and other consequences of an LLP member's departur

UK law firm BDBF has published a useful short article, 'Thinking about leaving an LLP? Read on'. It is available at https://www.bdbf.co.uk/thinking-about-leaving-an-llp-read-on/


Recent case on application of IR35 to partnerships

In Gary Lineker and Danielle Bux T/A Gary Lineker Media v HMRC [2021] UKFTT 101 (TC), the First Tier Tribunal held that IR35 could apply to partnerships - see further casenote at https://www.devereuxchambers.co.uk/resources/news/view/ftt-releases-decision-in-gary-lineker-ir35-appeal

Recent case on taxation of LLP member profit shares

In HFFX LLP and Ors v HMRC [2023] UKUT73 the Upper Tax Tribunal held that profit shares distributed to individual LLP members after first being distributed to the corporate member were liable to income tax under the mixed membership rules - see further casenote at https://www.rossmartin.co.uk/sme-tax-news/6879-ut-partnership-planning-subject-to-income-tax.

Book review: Modern Partnership Law

David Milman and Terence Flanagan, Modern Partnership Law (first published 1983, Routledge 2021), 210pp., hardback ISBN: 0709910150, eBook ISBN: 9781003324874

This is a republication of a classic text, in the Routledge Revivals series. It is co-authored by Professor David Milman, a leading partnership law academic who will be familiar to Forum members as a speaker at several Forum Conferences, and to readers worldwide from his many publications on partnership law, company law and insolvency law.

The writing style is highly engaging and the book is thus a pleasure to read – something which cannot be said of all legal texts!

As readers will know, many elements of partnership law have stood the test of time and the UK’s Partnership Act 1890 continues to govern partnerships in the 21st century, so this text retains much more relevance than most 40-year old legal texts.

Particularly useful discussions include Chapter 2 on Financing Partnerships, Chapter 5 on Relations between Partners inter se (including duties, partnership property and remuneration, Chapter 6 on Partners and Outsiders (including authority, liability and holding out), and the winding up section of Chapter 9 on Winding up and Insolvency.

There are also some interesting chapters which are less commonly found in partnership texts today. These include Chapter 3 on Partnership Employees (covering both the distinction between partners and employees, and the treatment of partnership employees) and Chapter 8 on Legal Regulation of and Intervention in Partnerships (covering the courts’ approach to partnership agreements, including restrictive covenants, arbitration clauses, expulsion, receiverships and dissolution).

Also of interest is Chapter 10 on Partnerships: Review and Reform. Although this predates the introduction of LLPs (and was written before the increase in use of LPs), it does discuss the 1981 Green Paper: A New Form of Incorporation for Small Firms which included the idea of an incorporated limited firm based on the internal constitution of a partnership. Other reforms discussed in the book have failed to materialise, including enabling partnerships to grant floating charges, and granting them separate legal personality, the latter having been proposed by the Law Commissions in 2003 but rejected by the government.

A wide range of cases are thoughtfully discussed, although the use of endnotes rather than footnotes annoyed this reviewer (though no doubt readers less dinosaur-like will obviate the problem by using the eBook rather than the hard copy!). The indexing is helpful, although a number of entries are indexed only within the entry for ‘partners’.

Of course some of the law is now outdated, including references to the litigation rules in the RSC rather than the CPR and to the 20-partner limit (now repealed); much of Chapter 4 on Partnerships and Spouses (another chapter unlikely to be found in partnership texts today), the very short insolvency section of Chapter 9 on Winding Up and Insolvency which predates the Insolvency Act 1986 and the Insolvent Partnerships Order 1994, and Chapter 7 on Partnerships and Taxation. However, while employment legislation has moved on, the partnership-specific principles outlined in Chapter 3 on Partnership Employees remain relevant.

In conclusion, this is an enjoyable and useful source of specialist legal commentary on a number of areas of partnership law, and Routledge is to be commending for republishing it.

Recent partnership publications

Forum members will know Professor David Milman well as a regular speaker and delegate at Forum, and I'd like to draw attention to a couple of his recent publications (one being recent only in one sense of that word!).
David's Modern Partnership Law (1983), co-authored with Terence Flanagan, has been reissued by Routledge in their Routledge Revivals series - see further https://www.routledge.com/Modern-Partnership-Law/Milman-Flanagan/p/book/9781032350172
The most recent of his always useful Partnership Law in Perspective round up of partnership cases in Sweet & Maxwell's Company Law Newsletter Issue 430 (December 2022) p1 - see further https://www.sweetandmaxwell.co.uk/Product/Company-Law/Sweet-AND-Maxwells-Company-Law-Newsletter/Journal/30791325

Handling partnership disputes in the professional services sector - webcast

Law firm Fox Williams has produced a webcast on partnership disputes. It is available at:


Short article on partner/LLP member restrictive covenants

UK law firm CM Murray has published a short article on partner/LLP member restrictive covenants and garden leave. It is available at:


Book Review: Lindley & Banks on Partnership (21st edn, 2022)

Lindley & Banks on Partnership, Roderick I’Anson Banks (ed) (21st edn, Sweet & Maxwell 2022), 1704pp., hardback, ISBN: 9780414092051. Also available as an eBook.

The latest edition of this classic text, edited by (it hardly needs saying) a leading barrister with extensive partnership law experience expertise, starts with a quote from the song My Way, ‘And now the end is near. And so I face the final curtain’. This alerts the reader to the fact that this edition is, apparently, likely to be the last full edition under the current editor. If this is so, one can only hope that future editors continue to produce work of equal quality (to say nothing of the quantity, this new edition coming in at 1700 pages compared with 1500 pages for the previous edition and 1300 for the edition before that).

The text is clearly written, and the basic structure remains the same as in previous editions, with a detailed consideration of the law relating to all aspects of a partnership’s life, from formation to dissolution and insolvency, including the relationship of partners inter se, their dealings with third parties, and taxation. The Appendices continue to contain the key pieces of partnership legislation (the Partnership Act 1890, the Limited Partnerships Act 1907, and the Limited Partnerships (Forms) Rules 2009), and relevant extracts from the Civil Procedure Rules and HMRC materials. There is also a separate section on limited partnerships, which are of increasing importance, especially (though not solely) in the financial services sector. However, limited liability partnerships (LLPs) continue to be largely excluded, although there is a short section on LLP agreements and a number of references to LLPs throughout the text, and of course, much of the law governing LLPs in the UK is based on the partnership law described in this book.

It remains important to be aware of the need to cross refer between different chapters of the book for many of the most important topics. This is because, as in previous editions, there is one very large chapter on Partnership Agreements, which includes a range of material on the internal relationship between partners, such as decision-making, the powers and duties of partners, the financial entitlement of current and outgoing partners, the admission or expulsion of a partner, and dissolution, However, many of these topics are also discussed extensively in other chapters and so, to get a full picture of the relevant law and the editor’s analysis, it is necessary to consult both. This approach of course reflects the fact that some matters can and should be dealt with by the partners in their agreement (and are therefore logically considered in the Partnership Agreements chapter), while there are also matters covered by mandatory or default law or which involve third parties (and which therefore need to be considered separately to any partnership agreement). Nonetheless, while some cross references are provided, and the use of subheadings and the detailed contents list and index aids the location of particular material, readers must take care not to assume that the chapter which they have consulted on a topic contains all of the relevant material, and instead to check whether it is additionally covered elsewhere in the book.

The new material in this edition includes explanation and analysis of important recent cases, including:
Ingenious Games LLP and others v Revenue and Customs Commissioners [2021] EWCA Civ 1180 (LLPs used for tax avoidance schemes both carried on a trade and did so with a view to profit).
Cheema v Jones and others [2017] EWCA Civ 1706 (admission of new partners created a new partnership at will, even though the new partnership agreement had never been signed, because the discussions about the new partnership were focussed on a new agreement and there was no reference to the old agreement as a fall-back position or evidence that all new partners had seen the old agreement)
Joseph v Deloitte NSE LLP [2020] EWCA Civ 1457 (a term would not be implied into an LLP agreement concerning the procedure for expulsion, because it would conflict with the express words of the agreement, and no promissory estoppel arose because there had been no relevant representation; the role of the court was not to make a fairer or more reasonable contract for the parties but to ascertain what their contract was)
Procter v Procter and others [2022] EWHC 1202 (Ch) (retiring partner not entitled to a sale of the partnership assets but to be paid out for his share at a valuation according to accounts and inquiries directed by the court)
BlueCrest Capital Management (UK) LLP v Revenue and Customs Commissioners [2022] UKFTT 204 (TC) (in the salaried member rules, disguised salary could include an amount which had not actually been varied, so long as it was capable of variation; and influence was not limited to managerial influence but could include direct financial influence, and need not be over the affairs of the partnership as a whole but could be over one or more aspects of the affairs of the partnership)
Moody v Estate of the late Norman Jones and others [2021] EWHC 3443 (Ch) (on a variety of issues including partnership property, abandonment of the partnership, barring by laches of a partner from asserting his rights as a partner, conduct giving rise to the option to dissolve the partnership, and specific performance of such an option)

This new edition thus continues to provide a comprehensive and authoritative source of reference, as befits a book which is regularly cited in court judgments. Issues which are frequently the subject of dispute between partners are examined in detail, but those issues which arise less commonly are also covered. As a result, it is an invaluable source of reference. This new edition has helpfully incorporated some of the material formerly contained in substantial footnotes into the main text, which reduces the risk of important points being overlooked. It would, however, be helpful, particularly for an academic audience, for there to be more references to relevant secondary sources.

In summary, this continues to be an essential reference text for practitioners, academics and postgraduate students in this area of law.




Comment List

  • None
This website is supported by the Society for Legal Scholars (SLS) Small Projects and Events Fund. The SLS is the learned society for those who teach law in a university or similar institution or who are otherwise engaged in legal scholarship. www.legalscholars.ac.uk