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APPLY TODAY: One of the largest housing providers in the UK, Optivo is hiring a Head of Legal Services - Property (£62,973.78; based in Croydon). Go to Public Law Jobs for more great opportunities:
CALLING ALL CHILDCARE LAWYERS: Manchester is hiring: Senior Lawyer x2 - Children & Families.

DON'T MISS: Modern Day Slavery and Human Trafficking - Excel Civil Enforcement (Online, 12 Dec)

Court of Appeal allows appeal over development agreement and procurement
Court of Appeal hands down key ruling in favour of developer on public procurement law and development agreements, also making first declaration of ineffectiveness in England

Monitoring officer expresses concern after committee votes to disclose legal advice
County council faces conducting future litigation with “its hands tied behind its back” if councillor is successful in having legal advice disclosed, its monitoring officer warns
County council secures spot on £272m wider public sector framework

Hampshire appointed alongside 70 other providers to Government’s £272m legal services framework for wider public sector (on Public Law Today)

Senior family judge calls for attention on process before care applications issued
Process before care application is issued is “ripe for attention”, President of Family Division says, to divert some cases away from court or ensure that cases are ‘match-fit’ for engagement in court process at Day One

Borough reviews legal section, holds "tentative" discussions on possible ABS
Council confirms it is reviewing structures of its legal section and joint legal team for children's services it is part of with other local authorities; at very early stage in discussions on alternative business structure (on Public Law Today)
Early and late sittings to be piloted in civil and family courts
Ministry of Justice announces plans to pilot early and late sittings in civil and family courts outside traditional court sitting times of 10am to 4pm

Council agrees settlement for girl assaulted at primary school
Unnamed local authority reaches settlement with parents whose daughter was sexually assaulted by other pupils at one of its primary schools, though it has not admitted liability

Invicta Law reports £300k+ underlying trading profit for first six months of 2018/19
Alternative business structure owned by Kent County Council reports more than £300,000 in underlying trading profit before tax for six months to 30 September 2018 (on Public Law Today)
MUST-READ: Cat amongst the pigeons: a new approach for the procurement of development agreements?
The Court of Appeal has ruled against a council in a procurement battle over a development agreement. Richard Collins and Kathrine Eddon analyse the judgment.
LOOKING FOR A TRAINING CONTRACT? Warwickshire, One Legal (Tewkesbury) and HB Public Law are hiring.

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DPS - Practice management software for local government including ABSs

Council uses social media evidence to defeat £140k claim by cyclist
Local authority uses social media evidence to win case in which cyclist lied about accident and sought to obtain £140,000 in damages

Minister gives details of ‘social value’ measures for government procurements
Central government procurements will be required by summer 2019 to take social and economic benefits into account in certain priority areas, Cabinet Office Minister David Lidington announces; key suppliers also beginning to put in place 'living wills' in event of corporate failure

Court of Appeal hears NHS accountable care organisation dispute
Court of Appeal is this week hearing campaign group’s challenge to Government’s decision to create Accountable Care Organisations, now called Integrated Care Providers

East Midlands authorities eye £8.9m panel of counsel for child care matters
Four local authorities looking to set up £8.9m, five-year panel of counsel to provide advice and advocacy services in respect of child care legal matters (on Public Law Today)

Village green campaigners to take legal action over conduct of meeting
Campaign group seeking to designate village green crowdfunding further appeal against council's conduct of meeting that decided on status of land; group says it also hopes to set precedent that all applications to designate village greens should come under Aarhus Convention and so have £5,000 cap on costs awarded to other party in failed applications

Council criticised for cutting support to couple asked to be special guardians
Ombudsman investigation finds that local authority unfairly cut financial support to couple, after asking them to become special guardians to children they were fostering

See all of our most recent news stories
DON'T MISS OUT: Some closing dates are imminent: SIGN UP TO RECEIVE JOB ALERTS: TOP LOCUM ROLES: Democratic Services and Governance Locum (North West), Education Lawyer (Hampshire) and Civil Litigation Lawyer - Outside IR35 (East Midlands).

Council loses High Court battle over new access road to Port of Liverpool
High Court judge rejects legal challenge brought by Sefton Council over Highways England’s consultation on new access road to Port of Liverpool

Borough prosecutes former tenant for subletting and Right to Buy fraud
Former tenant of Camden Council this month pleaded guilty to illegal subletting and fraudulently applying for Right to Buy

Peers criticise growing use of ‘Henry VIII’ powers by successive governments
House of Lords Constitution Committee hits out at Government’s escalating use of so-called “Henry VIII powers”, describing practice as “constitutionally objectional”

Council defeats challenge to grant of permission for school expansion
High Court dismisses judicial review challenge brought against Isle of Wight Council over its decision to approve planning permission for proposed new boarding house at school
MARKETPLACE: Kennedy Cater
Invicta Law in £300k+ trading profit for first six months of 2018/19
Authorities eye £8.9m panel of counsel for child care matters
Borough reviews legal section, holds "tentative" discussions on ABS
SE housing group invites tenders for £600k conveyancing framework
Council secures spot on £272m wider public sector framework
Bevan Brittan promotes two partners from within


This week's analysis

Rating ATMs and similar facilities
Steven Gasztowicz QC analyses a recent Court of Appeal ruling on the rating of ATMs and similar facilities - or whether ‘Holes in the Wall’ give free money to government.

RIP “smash and grab”?
The Court of Appeal has confirmed the demise of “smash and grab” adjudication, write Aidan Steensma and colleagues at CMS.

New Housing Court: is it needed?
Andy Lane considers whether we need the proposed specialist Housing Court in England.

Revised s.45 Code of Practice under FOI
Ibrahim Hasan highlights the key points from the new version of the s.45 FOIA Code of Practice.
Yet another habitats (and EIA) judgment from the CJEU
The Court of Justice of the European Union has handed down a new ruling on habitats and environmental impact assessment. Charles Banner sets out its conclusions.


We are delighted to announce the publication of our Monitoring Officers 2018 report, in association with Lawyers in Local Government.

The aim of the report is to identify and analyse the challenges ahead for monitoring officers, their deputies and other lawyers involved in the governance of local authorities. It comes at a time when the role is under great pressure and the survey - in which more than 100 local authority monitoring  officers took part - aims to identify the key issues that they face and, with the help of some of the most senior current practitioners, identify effective strategies to address them.

Click here to access the report. Also available to download as a pdf.
Catch-up on recent articles on Local Government Lawyer and Public Law Today:

Adult Social Services: Costs out of all proportion – and the problem for litigants in person
The Court of Protection team at 39 Essex Chambers look at a judge's frustration over the level of costs in a case where there were financial safeguarding concerns in relation to a young man with a severe learning disability.
Adult Social Services: Deprivation of liberty, court review and costs
The Court of Protection team at 39 Essex Chambers look at the costs outcome where a local authority was late to apply for a review of a deprivation of liberty.

Children: Trimega test results – an update
Rebecca Cross examines the lessons for practitioners from the ongoing investigation into tests carried out by a forensic toxicology company over a four-year period.

Children: The 26-week time limit and purposeful delay
Has the 26-week time limit in child care proceedings eliminated purposeful delay? Eleanor Marsh reports on a significant Court of Appeal ruling.

Children: Looked after children and medical treatment
Eleanor Derry and Deborah Jeremiah consider the issues around obtaining consent for the provision of medical treatment to looked after children.

Children: Deprivations of liberty, young persons and the inherent jurisdiction
In relation to deprivation of liberty, when is consent irrelevant? The Court of Protection team at 39 Essex Chambers analyse an important Court of Appeal ruling for children's services.
Community Safety: Gang injunctions, human rights and standards of proof
The Court of Appeal recently rejected a legal challenge brought on human rights grounds over a gang injunction obtained by Birmingham City Council. Jonathan Manning and Ayesha Omar explain why.

Dispute Resolution: The dangers of one-size-fits-all tree inspection regimes
A recent Court of Appeal ruling means it is time for councils to re-examine their tree inspection regimes, write Simon Jones and Susan Rands.

Dispute Resolution: If refusing Bert & Ernie isn’t discrimination, what is?
The Supreme Court has decided that a bakery’s refusal to bake a cake with a slogan promoting gay marriage was not sexual orientation discrimination. Phil Allen analyses the ruling, including its impact on employment law.

Education: Home schooling in England and Wales
Legal changes are afoot in relation to home schooling. Dr David Sykes and Dr Samantha Davey look at the issues for local authorities and analyse what is in store.

Education: When must a local authority carry out an EHC needs assessment?
Lexis PSL Local Government, in partnership with Hannah Lynch of St Pauls Chambers, examine the issues raised by the replacement of statements of special educational needs with Education, Health and Care (EHC) plans.

Employment: A mentally healthy workplace
Yasmin Allan considers the legal and practical issues linked to the employee wellbeing agenda.

Employment: Filming public officials
Does filming a public official performing their job constitute journalism? Matt Collins analyses an Advocate-General’s opinion on the issue.

Employment: Employment tribunals and contractual terms in wages claims
The Court of Appeal has held that an employment tribunal has jurisdiction to interpret contractual terms in a wages claim. David Mitchell analyses the ruling.

Governance: Electoral law: unfit for the 21st century?
With democracy at risk there is no excuse for legislative inaction, argue Alison Foster QC, Tom Tabori and Gethin Thomas who make the case for reform and put forward proposals for change.

Governance: The importance of public consultation in the public sector decision-making process
A number of recent cases have resulted in public sector decisions being quashed for lack of proper public consultation. Alex Dillistone, partner at Winckworth Sherwood, discusses the importance of effective consultation with LexisPSL Public Law.

Governance: The inequalities fight – the challenges and risks faced by local government in Scotland
Rory Alexander looks at the opportunities - and challenges - for local authorities as a result of the Scottish Government's decision to enforce the Fairer Scotland Duty.

Health: NHS trusts, non-clinically trained staff and duties of care
The Supreme Court has found a hospital liable for inaccurate waiting time information given by its A&E reception. Peter Downey and Mark Ashley consider the implications.

Housing: Defences in 'second succession' cases
A recent High Court case considered the extent to which Articles 8 and 14 of the ECHR can provide a defence to the children of secure tenants in ‘second succession’ cases. Niamh O’Brien reports on the outcome.

Housing: What is an introductory tenancy?
LexisPSL Public Law, in partnership with Chris Bryden of 4 King’s Bench Walk analyse the key features of introductory tenancies.

Housing: Housing stock transfers: key issues
In partnershsip with Alan Aisbett of Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP, LexisPSL Local Government examine the key issues in relation to housing stock transfers.

Housing: Homelessness - vulnerable groups
LexisPSL Public Law explores the special provisions which apply to groups who are particularly vulnerable to homelessness and refers to the Homelessness Code of Guidance for Local Authorities, February 2018.

Information Law: New RIPA Codes of Practice
Ibrahim Hasan looks at the key changes in the new RIPA Codes of Practice for Surveillance and Covert Human Intelligence Sources (CHIS).

Licensing: Limited life licences: the verdict
Philip Kolvin QC reports on the outcome of a case where a licensing sub-committee decided to grant a licence for a shorter period than the applicant had requested.

Licensing: Court directions and appeals against licence revocations
A modern slavery appeal has been summarily dismissed for non-compliance with court directions. Gary Grant sets out why.

Management: Local authorities: getting started with legal apprenticeships
One of the great privileges of working with councils to deliver apprenticeships is observing the different approaches legal departments take to deploying and developing apprentice staff, writes Noel Inge.

Planning: Housing supply
A High Court judge recently rejected a council's application for an order quashing a planning inspector's grant of permission for a 29-dwelling development. James Goudie QC explains why.

Planning: Appealing planning permission refusals
Stuart Evans sets out some practical considerations in cases where planning committees refuse planning permission despite officers' recommendations for approval.

Planning: The Interpretation Act and discharge of affordable housing obligations
Richard Moules considers the outcome of a Planning Court case on whether the Interpretation Act 1978 preserved jurisdiction to modify or discharge affordable housing obligations.

Planning: Controlling outdoor advertising
The Court of Appeal has issued a ruling on the ability of local planning authorities to control advertisements. Tim Buley explains the outcome.

Planning: Enforcing s106 agreements
What can you do if in relation to s.106 agreements things don’t work out as planned? Gary Soloman explains.

Procurement & Contracts: All bidders are equal, but are some ‘more equal’ than others?
Jenny Beresford-Jones reports on a recent European procurement case on incumbent providers and the need for a level playing field.

Procurement & Contracts: The Sky Blue saga continues
The Court of Appeal has recently handed down a judgment in a dispute over whether Coventry City Council provided unlawful state aid in relation to the Ricoh Arena. Paul O'Sullivan considers the lessons from the ruling.

Procurement & Contracts: The High Court on concession contracts
The High Court has handed down guidance on what constitutes a “concession contract”. James Goudie QC and Joanne Clement analyse the ruling.

Projects: Social Impact Bond schemes
Craig Elder examines the opportunities provided by social impact bonds - and how to overcome the barriers to their successful implementation.

Projects: Budget 2018 - whither PFI?
In the light of the Chancellor of the Exchequer’s announcement this week, David Kilduff considers - what next for public/private contracting?

Projects: Who will meet local government’s investment needs now the PFI has gone?
Rob Hann and Stephen Pearson take a look at what worked in the past and what needs to happen now to prompt investment and economic development in local government.
Property: Rights under the Electronic Communications Code
The Upper Tribunal has given the first judgment imposing interim Electronic Communications Code rights. Jonathan Wills reports on the outcome.

Property: Possession claims and public law duties
A recent case has established that public bodies must consider their public law obligations before taking steps to evict an occupier, even if the occupier does not have any private law right to remain in the property (such as a trespasser). Michelle Bendall reports.

Property: Residential extensions and CIL
Action needs to be taken over exemption for residential extension from the Community Infrastructure Levy, writes Christopher Cant.

Regulatory: A valuable alternative to prosecution: the Environment Agency and civil undertakings
Civil sanctions in environmental law: what are they and why do they matter? Tim Green and Gus Baker explain.

Transport & Highways: Highways and inspection systems
A council’s annual inspection system was recently found by a court to be adequate for the purposes of S.58 of the Highways Act 1980 (the Act) when determining liability. Lucie Evans and Suzanne Milne report.

Transport & Highways: Installing barriers on public highways
LexisPSL Local Government, in partnership with Laura Hughes of Browne Jacobson, deals with the question of the powers available to a local authority when installing gates or barriers on public highways.

Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council
Test Valley - Contracts & Procurement Lawyer
Test Valley - Litigation Lawyer
Test Valley - Data Protection Lawyer
Head of Legal Services - Property
Tower Hamlets Council
London Borough of Tower Hamlets
Leeds City Council
Leeds City Council
Housing Disrepair

Team Leader
Principal Legal Officers x2
Legal Assistant

HB Public Law
HB Public Law
Assistant Team Leader / Senior Lawyer - Children's Social Care
Trainee Solicitor

Uttlesford District Council
Uttlesfield District Council
Solicitor/Lawyer - Planning & Contracts PT
Senior Legal Officer - Dispute Resolution
Calderdale Council
Calderdale Council
Solicitor/Barrister - Child Care
Gateshead Council
Gateshead Council
Service Director - Legal & Democratic Services
Manchester City Council
Manchester City Council
Senior Lawyer x2 - Children's Services
Southampton & Fareham Legal Services Partnership
Southampton & Fareham Legal Services Partnership
Solicitor - Child Care
Senior Legal Assistant - Child Care

Ealing Council
London Borough of Ealing
Contracts Lawyer
Reading Borough Council
Reading Borough Council
Solicitor/Legal Executive - Housing Litigation
Sevenoaks District Council
Sevenoaks District Council
Principal Planning Lawyer
West Sussex
West Sussex County Council
Legal Assistant

London Borough of Islington
Islington Council
Contracts Lawyer
Scarborough Council
Scarborough Council
Governance Officer
West Suffolk Council
West Suffolk Council
Specialist Lawyer - Projects
Lawyer - Planning
Lawyer - Litigation & Licensing

Lawyer - Children's Social Care (Shefford)
Lawyer - Children's Social Care (Northampton)

District Law Shared Service
District Law Shared Service
Senior Property Lawyer
Planning Lawyer
Property Lawyer

Warwickshire County Council
Warwickshire County Council
Trainee Solicitor

Invicta Law
Childcare Lawyer
Planning Lawyer
Commercial Property Lawyer


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