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Lydia Michaelson-Yeates

Legal Director


+44 (0)121 237 3986


Lydia specialises in governance, academy projects, mergers and restructures together with general commercial advice to our education clients. Lydia has a strong reputation with the team’s clients as a trusted advisor and  a key member of the Education team. 

Lydia’s background as a corporate and commercial lawyer with considerable experience of transactional work means she is well placed to advise our clients on collaborative working and projects. Lydia has extensive experience with conversions and academy projects, leading particularly on academy transfers and complex rebrokered projects. Lydia has supported various academy trusts on high profile rebrokered transfers from the early stages of undertaking due diligence to negotiating and finalising the terms of the commercial transfer agreements. Lydia has supported clients on the nuances of rebrokered transfers both from a legal and practical perspective. Lydia also advised on the first wave of sixth form college academisation projects including leading on specific advice relating to consultation requirements under the legislative framework. In addition to advising within the academies sector, Lydia also supports on school collaborations and partnerships, including advising on the School Company Regulations and incorporating school companies or preparing service level agreements for support and collaborative arrangements between schools together with advising on trading companies and assisting with the documentation to support academy trusts with any commercial trading arrangements.


Featured experience

Collaborative Merger

Joint instruction from two MATs to advise on their collaborative merger arrangements, involving transfer of four academies into one MAT. Worked with the Trusts to agree the procedure to be followed and initiated a process of information gathering to ensure clients were aware of due diligence matters before taking these schools into the Trust, subsequently agreeing the transfer documentation. 


Provided a bespoke report for the board of a MAT with advice around the relevant issues for Trustees and Members in terms of charity and company law as it applies to mergers between multi-academy trusts. This included providing advice around key potential governance scenarios as between the Trustees and Members of the Trust and how they would be appropriately managed. 


Instructed to advise on the merger between a mixed MAT and another multi-academy trust involving initial support with a session on approaching governance arrangements for the merged organisation.

Rebrokered Transfer

Advising on the re-brokerage of six academies from a trust where the DfE intervened appointing a turnaround director and interim CFO because of the complexity of issues involved and delivering the successful transfer of the academies despite the challenges of the first lockdown.