Local Government Lawyer
Editor's blog: A call to arms

The status of local government lawyers has, it is generally accepted, fallen since the heady days of the 1970s when the legal profession supplied a significant proportion of chief executives. Only a couple of years ago, research by ACSeS suggested that many chief legal officers/monitoring officers were not involved in strategic process beyond their traditional professional roles. Read more...


Jobs latest: A fantastic and rare opportunity has arisen at the Local Government Association to be a Corporate Legal Adviser (salary: £71,564 to £81,763). Meanwhile, the closing date for the role of Solicitor and Deputy Monitoring Officer at Derbyshire Dales is fast approaching (3 August). 

Are you a procurement specialist employed in the public sector? In asssociation with Bevan Brittan, Local Government Lawyer is conducting research into procurement law issues and is interested to hear your views. Please complete our survey here.


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News headlines

ContractsCouncil wins Supreme Court battle over tenancy succession Majority of 3-2 says common law rules applied on death of joint tenant ahead of Housing Act 1985

Former chief executive loses judicial review over dismissal after elected mayor took office Judge criticises wording of key letter, but rejects claims that dismissal were unlawful

Supreme Court upholds general practice on costs awards in care cases No exception to be made for fact-finding hearings

Trio guilty of contempt of court after bogus claim against council London borough initially accepted liability but became suspicious after seeing medical and other records

Ryder report vows "consistent but firm" approach to public law children cases Association of Directors of Children's Services accepts reforms proposed by Mr Justice Ryder will present significant challenges to local authority practice

Shelter fires warning over fixed terms in guide to developing tenancy strategies Charity suggests fixed terms could cost more, calls for liaison between local housing authorities to avoid 'postcode lottery'

Landmark deprivations of liberty cases head to Supreme Court Highest court to hear Cheshire West and Surrey CC v P & Q


LGO publishes report on lessons from adult care complaints Ombudsman points to challenging nature of process of safeguarding vulnerable adults

High Court quashes decision by council not to register land as village green Local authority has earmarked land for new academy

Civil Justice Council issues revised guidance on instructing experts in civil claims Changes in light of Jackson Review and Factortame (No. 8)

MPs reject wholesale reforms to FOI regime despite "chilling effect" claims Committee says scope of legislation should not be changed but concerns over operation need to be addressed

NHS trust to pay out £476k for safety failings after care home stabbing Joint HSE and council investigation concluded that home was not correct care facility for man with bipolar disorder

ICO warns over CCTV in taxis as council issued with enforcement notice Watchdog warns local authorities of need to consider all legal obligations before requiring installation of CCTV in taxis and PHVs

Streamline PQQs and use smaller lots, small businesses tell councils Federation of Small Businesses research suggests inadequate records on where spend goes


Ministers publish draft guidance on duties of health and wellbeing boards

Campaigners launch JR over conversion of primary school to academy

Devolve powers on regulating gambling to local authorities, say MPs

Law Society issues practice note on equality and diversity


Birmingham names six firms to adults and children's services legal work

Home Office issues guidance in bid to tackle false ID


See all of our most recent news stories



New articles on Local Government Lawyer

InjunctionLaw in a political environment
If once upon a time council lawyers were the aristocrats of local government, now they're frequently seen as techie footsoldiers, writes Nicholas Dobson

Root cause
A recent Court of Appeal ruling in a case involving property subsidence caused by tree roots is significant for local authorities, writes Andrew Plunkett.

Blowing in the wind
Michael Fahy looks at some of the more contentious property aspects surrounding wind farms.

Tree preservation orders: all change
Charles Mynors considers recent changes to the rules relating to tree preservation orders.

Financial protection
Simon Edwards looks at the options for a local authority for the management of P's finances.

Negotiating strategy
Richard Auton and Jessica Cumming examine the proposed replacement for the current standard negotiated procedure in public procurement.

Spotlight on stress
In the second of two articles on stress, Roy Woollard analyses harassment claims under the Protection from Harassment Act.

A knotty problem
A recent Charity Commission investigation highlights the dangers for local authorities who are the sole trustees of a charity, writes Andrew Uprichard.

At your station
The sale of alcohol at petrol station forecourts has been a vexed issue for years. Jeffrey Leib looks at recent developments.

Schools, sport and injuries
Local authorities should welcome a recent Court of Appeal ruling in a case where a pupil was injured during a golf lesson at school, Ridwaan Omar says.
 


Local Government Law.tv


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St Philip'sThe Public Sector Equality Duty The aim of this course is to provide practical advice to local authorities and other public bodies on how to ensure that they comply with the Public Sector Equality Duty introduced by the Equality Act 2010.

HardwickeThe Localism Act 2011 and Housing This package consists of four courses covering the major changes for social landlords and housing authorities brought about by the Localism Act 2011 - Flexible Tenures, Homelessness, Part 6 Allocations and Tenancy Strategies and Regulation.

St PhilipsJudicial Review and Governance This course assesses the effect of recent judicial review cases on the local authority decision-making process, with particular reference to funding decisions and challenges to development plans.

ITCHandling Persistent Complainants This webinar concerns the subject of noise as a statutory nuisance. Referencing some notable noise nuisance cases the presentation runs through the statutory duties and provides an overview of the key stages and enforcement mechanisms in place.

Hill DickinsonManaging a Local Authority Estate Keeping up-to-speed with property law developments is more important than ever for local authority solicitors and property professionals.This webinar outlines the key emerging topics for local authorities as owners, landlords and tenants.

4-5 Gray's Inn SquareAge Assessments How will the courts determine whether an individual is legally a child or not? This course provides guidance on what evidence should and should not be taken into account when making a decision.

Act NowEmail and Internet Monitoring  Monitoring and recording of employees’ email, internet and telephone usage is a legal minefield. This workshop provides a thorough examination of the law and practice in this area.

LGLtvUnlimited access for 12 months Unlimited access to all online content on Local Government Law.tv gor just £199 + VAT with the option to add a full day LGG course for £150 +VAT, covering all of your annual CPD needs for less than £350 (+VAT).

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BlogsThe latest blogs...

Infrastructure project progress - slow, slow, quick, quick, slow by Angus Walker
Today's entry is a round-up of news on some selected larger infrastructure projects - and a late National Policy Statement or two.


Snap judgement: How do you see your role as a local authority lawyer?
  • ...an integral part of my authority's management team
  •  
  • ...a technical service provider to client departments
Click here to vote now


And some you may have missed....

Adult Social Services: Determining financial provision in adult social care The Supreme Court's decision in R (KM) v Cambridgeshire CC was keenly awaited. Jonathan Auburn examines its significance for local authorities.

Children's Services: SEN and academies: the Upper Tribunal has its say The approach of academies to admitting children with special educational needs has been controversial. James Cornwell analyses an important Upper Tribunal ruling. 

Community Safety: To RIPA or not to RIPA The days of local authorities being able to use surveillance powers to tackle dog fouling and littering offences will soon be over. Ibrahim Hasan looks at what happens next. 

Employment: Stress testing: Hatton and Sutherland ten years on In the first of two articles, Roy Woollard looks at developments in workplace stress claims.

Governance: The LIBOR affair and local authorities The revelations over LIBOR have dominated the front pages in recent weeks. But what are the potential consequences for local authorities? Emily Heard, Peter Keith-Lucas and Patrick Holmes explain.

Healthcare: Advance declarations to withdraw treatment A recent caes has highlighted the problems of expressing advance wishes to end life-sustaining treatment, and has addressed the issue of the costs of the Official Solicitor. Andrew Parsons considers the ruling.

Housing: Zambrano carers and their eligibility - a provisional solution The ECJ decision in Zambrano is significant in how it impacts upon applications under Part VII of the Housing Act 1996. Donald Broatch sets out the approach authorities should take.

Licensing: Aiming at the target The issue of clusters of betting shops appearing on high streets has risen up the licensing agenda. Gerald Gouriet QC sets out a possible way forward.

Litigation: Making the right choice of expert An unusual case where there was controversy over the appointment of an expert in Court of Protection proceedings has potentially wide significance, writes the Court of Protection team at 39 Essex Street

Planning: Business matters Caroline Bywater analyses a planning case in the High Court that examined the protection of local businesses as a material consideration.

Procurement: Time to take notice Richard Auton and Jessica Cumming provide their top ten tips on Contract (OJEU) Notices.

Projects: Band on the run Can the Community Infrastructure Levy be used to fund broadband? Malcolm Dowden examines the possibilities. 

Property: Rights to Light - Ancient & Modern Laura Tweedy looks at the current law in relation to rights to light and touches upon some of the problems faced by developers and landowners alike.

Regulatory: Emergency ahead! Works in progress Michael Salau reports on a significant ruling for local authorities seeking to persuade owners of derelict buildings to carry out repair works.


Corporate Legal Adviser, Local Government Association


Derbyshire Dales


Solicitor and Deputy Monitoring Officer
We are looking for an enthusiastic and capable Solicitor to lead a busy in-house team dealing with legal matters across the whole of the Council’s core services, and to take a personal interest in specialist areas such as RIPA, procurement, FOI, litigation and asset management. CLOSING DATE: 3 AUGUST.


Jobs of the week

Regulatory Lawyer
A fantastic opportunity has arisen for a Regulatory Lawyer to join a highly regarded organisation based in the South East. 

Interim Assistant Head of Law
A public sector organisation based in the North West is looking for an Interim Assistant Head of Law. 

Senior Contracts Lawyer
An interesting position for a Senior Contracts and Procurement Lawyer has arisen at a well respected local authority along the South Coast. 

Senior Employment Solicitor
A local authority based in London is looking to hire a Senior Employment Lawyer on a locum basis. 

Head of Legal & Democratic Services
Our client, a public sector organisation based in the Birmingham area, is looking for a pragmatic Head of Legal to lead the internal team through an exciting period. 

Head of Legal 
An excellent opportunity has arisen for a locum Head of Legal to work for a large local authority in the Midlands for a minimum of six months. 

Legal Adviser - Complex Complaints
You will be responsible for providing legal support to the wider function, both to internal committees, the investigation function and senior management board. 

Other featured jobs

Litigation Lawyer 
An exciting opportunity has arisen at a regulatory body in East Sussex for a Litigation Lawyer with 3+ years' PQE. 

Housing Locum
A great opportunity has arisen for a housing lawyer to join a local authority on a contract basis. 

Childcare Solicitor
Well respected local authority based in the Midlands requires a Childcare Solicitor to join its team immediately for an ongoing period. 

Planning Locum
An excellent opportunity for a Planning Lawyer has arisen in the East of England for a successful local authority legal team. 

Conveyancer
A well regarded local authority based in the North of England is seeking a Conveyancer to join its Commercial Property Department. 

Childcare Solicitor
A local authority based in the West MIdlands is looking for a Childcare Solicitor. 

Litigation Lawyer
A public sector authority requires a Litigation Lawyer with 4+ years' PQE for a three to six-month term. 

Commercial Contracts Locum
An excellent opportunity has arisen for a Commercial Lawyer in the North West. 

Childcare Solicitor
An opportunity has arisen for a Childcare Solicitor to join a reputable firm in the London area. 

Planning Lawyer
Our client is a local authority based in Greater Manchester. They are currently seeking a Planning Lawyer to join asap on a part-time basis. 

Adult Social Services Solicitor
A local authority based in the North West is looking of an Adult Social Services Solicitor to join its legal services team. 

Housing Lawyer
A local authority in London is looking for an experienced Housing Lawyer to join its team on a locum basis.

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