Local authorities are facing increasing challenges. Re-organisations and structural reform, financial pressures, community engagement and the need to remain dynamic and fair through political, social and economic change; all are complex tasks heightened by intense public scrutiny and media attention.
With extensive experience working across all council service areas and in-house, Browne Jacobson’s legal experts act as an extension of your team. We’ll support you in a collaborative, impactful way to make the complex simple and to deliver your ever-evolving roles and objectives.
At Browne Jacobson, we’re thought leaders providing world-class advice on current and complex matters of government.
As a testament to our commitment to the public sector, we’re on all major public sector procurement frameworks – meaning that you can have instant access our services, at a fair price and without the need for any additional due diligence.
Crown Commercial Service Public Sector Legal Services (ref. RM6240 - lots 1a and 2a)
KCS (Kent County Council) Legal Services (ref. Y21012)
London Borough’s Legal Alliance (lots 1 and 2)
North West Legal Consortium (lot 5)
Welsh Government Commercial Delivery, formerly the National Procurement Service (lots 1, 4 - 6, 8 - 11 and 13)
We’re consistently trusted by a client base that includes 200+ local authorities, 50 NHS bodies, 10 central government departments and numerous fire, social care and social housing providers – but we don’t come with preconceived notions. We seek to understand and build relationships that are tailored to your individual needs.
We have offices or strong connections in all major economic regions of the UK, as well as a network of thoroughly and securely vetted partner firms in jurisdictions where we’re not present. So, even if we don’t have an office nearby, we can still meet your needs.
We’re recognised as ‘a true heavyweight’ in the public sector, with unparalleled experience. Many of our lawyers have previously worked in the public sector and so have an unrivalled understanding of the environment in which you operate.
We look to add value where we can, supporting you and your team with your growth and development. We go the extra mile at no additional cost, providing training, seminars and networking opportunities, as well as issuing regular newsletters providing guidance on technical and sector issues so you’re always up to date on the law.
"The team are always available and provide support on urgent matters."
Law firm Browne Jacobson has collaborated with Wiltshire Council and Christ Church Business School on the launch event of The Council Company Best Practice and Innovation Network, a platform which brings together academic experts and senior local authority leaders, allowing them to share best practice in relation to council companies.
Announced in September but scrapped on 17 November the investment zone proposals were very short lived. The proposal has now morphed into the proposal for a smaller number of clustered zones earmarked for investment.
On 2 November 2022, the Supreme Court handed down its judgment in the much awaiting case of Hillside Parks Ltd v Snowdonia National Park Authority  UKSC 30. The Court’s judgment suggests that the long established practice of using drop-in applications is in fact much more restricted than previously thought. This judgment therefore has significant implications for both the developers and local planning authorities.
In ‘failure to remove’ claims, the claimant alleges abuse in the family home and asserts that the local authority should have known about the abuse and/or that they should have removed the claimant from the family home and into care earlier.
Across the UK, homelessness is an urgent crisis, and one that is set to grow amid the rising cost of living. Local authorities are at the forefront of responding to this crisis, but with a lack of properties that are suitable for social housing across the UK, vulnerable individuals and families are often housed in temporary accommodation.
Updates include UK Shared Prosperity Fund, contracts, Subsidy Control Bill, data controller liability, Government Covid-19 procurement and Highway Code revisions.
Investment zones have been introduced by the Conservative party to get the United Kingdom (UK) ‘working, building and growing’. They are to be designated sites which provide time-limited tax incentives, streamlined planning rules and wider support for local growth to encourage investment and accelerate the development of housing and infrastructure that the UK needs to drive economic growth. Processes and requirements that slow down development will be stripped back with the intention of attracting new investment.
Created at the end of the Brexit transition period, Retained EU Law is a category of domestic law that consists of EU-derived legislation retained in our domestic legal framework by the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018. This was never intended to be a permanent arrangement as parliament promised to deal with retained EU law through the Retained EU Law (Revocation and Reform) Bill (the “Bill”).
It is clear that the digital landscape, often termed cyberspace, is a man-made environment, in which human behaviour dominates and where technology both influences and aids our role in it — through the internet, telecoms and networked computer systems, which are often interdependent. The extent to which any organisation is potentially vulnerable to cyber-attack depends on how well these elements are aligned.
Three months on from the commencement of the new statutory Integrated Care Systems (ICS) Anja Beriro and Gerrard Hanratty reflect on the main themes and issues that have come from the new relationship between local government and health.
The Procurement Bill (the Bill) has now been with us for about four months, during which time there have been a huge number of amendments proposed in the House of Lords (circa 320). Lately, there has been less mention of it — unsurprising, really, given everything else going on in politics recently — but here’s a summary of some of the key issues and themes so far.
Browne Jacobson has been named as a supplier on Crown Commercial Service’s (CCS) Public Sector Legal Services Framework on Lot 1a – full-service provision (England and Wales) and Lot 2a – general service provision (England and Wales).
Browne Jacobson has been ranked as a Top Tier law firm in 25 key practice areas in Legal 500 UK 2023, the independent directory of comparative law firm performance. The firm also continues to underpin its status as one of the leading law firms in the East Midlands region with 16 Tier 1 rankings.
Welcome to our September edition of Public Matters, our monthly round-up of legal updates, news and insights for the public sector.
The Chancellor’s recent mini-budget provided a significant announcement for business as it was confirmed that the off-payroll working rules (known as “IR35”) put in place for public and private sector businesses from 2017 and 2021 will be scrapped from April 2023.
Devolution is the transfer of powers in areas like transport, housing and skills in England and since the Cities and Local Government Devolution Act 2016 has been a much-discussed topic.
In this article we look at local authority companies and whether they are subject to the Freedom of Information Act 2000. And for those that are, what information are they legally obliged to submit.
The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) has published a consultation on proposals to require Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) administering authorities (AAs) in England and Wales to assess, manage and report on climate change risks.
The Department for Education (DfE) have announced that the conversion of Donisthorpe Primary School in Leicestershire on 1st September marked the 10,000th academy conversion.
On 31 August 2022, the Court of Appeal handed down the Judgment in respect of the appeal case of HXA v Surrey County Council and YXA v Wolverhampton City Council .
This month, HM Treasury issued a consultation on Administrative Control Process for Public Sector Exits with draft guidance. They’re proposing to introduce an expanded approvals process for employee exits and special severance payments, and additional reporting requirements. If approved, the proposals will impact public sector bodies and those that do not have a specific right to make exit payments.
The focus on the Levelling Up agenda and the availability of grant funding, means there are numerous important regeneration schemes actively being pursued across the country. With ever-escalating project and building costs, in many cases, applications that were made for grant funding were based on costs contingencies that have already been exceeded.
The Government has recently published its response to the consultation on Subsidies and Schemes of Interest and of Particular Interest under the Subsidy Control Act 2022. In this article, our subsidy control experts discuss some of the key points coming out of the response, and their impact for public authorities.
Browne Jacobson has been appointed on to London Borough’s Legal Alliance (LBLA) legal services framework after successfully bidding for their core legal work. The new three year contract which has a one year option to extend and is worth potentially £16m in fees, commenced on 8 July 2022. It replaces the Boroughs’ existing panel arrangement. The appointment will see the firm advise on areas such as regeneration, litigation, commercial and real estate.
When carrying out a mix of activities it can be less clear if it is 'economic'. We look at the impact on local authorities & charities.
In the rapidly moving new world of subsidy control law, there’s been several major developments over the last few weeks, as Government looks to start providing more detailed assistance to public authorities in navigating the new legislative regime established by the Subsidy Control Act.
By the time PFI really got into its stride in the early 2000s, standard form contracts had pretty much nailed down the terms and anticipated anything that might happen, good or bad, during the course of the 25 years it covered.
In this month’s decision of CJ & Ors v Chief Constable of Wiltshire Police the court was given the task of considering whether a sexual abuse action, brought under the Human Rights Act 1998 should be allowed to proceed to trial where the claim had been brought outside the one-year period prescribed by the Act.