Local Government Lawyer
Editor's blog: Taking the temperature

This week we are launching a survey of legal professionals working in local government and the wider public sector. So if you are a paralegal or head of legal, employed on a permanent, contract or locum basis, please complete our questionnaire - it should take no more than ten minutes and one entrant will win a £50 John Lewis voucher. Read more...

Don't delay: Today (8 March) is the closing date to apply for the Planning Lawyer and Commercial Property Lawyers roles at the award-winning shared legal service at Merton and Richmond Councils. And you only have a week to apply for the Head of Legal Services at Tameside MBC post . Top locum roles available on our site include: Managing Lawyer and Deputy Monitoring Officer, Civil and Criminal Prosecutions Solicitor and Commercial Contracts Locum. If you have vacancies to fill, job advertising on the site costs from just £150 + VAT. Click here for more details.

Whether you are a paralegal or a head of legal in the public sector, please complete our Careers Survey. All answers will be treated anonymously. You will be entered into our draw to win a £50 John Lewis voucher.

Book now: Public Sector Housing Law Conference (13 March); Conducting a Care Case (multiple dates); Development & Highways (multiple dates) and The Equality Act and Possession Proceedings (26 April).

LGL latest: 22,342 unique visitors last month (up 30% on February 2012).

News headlines

ProjectsWatchdog slams "unlawful" decision by council on pay of senior officers Assistant Auditor General finds significant failures in governance arrangements and inadequacies in processes

Landlords boosted by Supreme Court ruling on service charges Majority of 3:2 overturns Court of Appeal in case focusing on statutory consultation requirements

Local authorities hail High Court ruling on waste regulations Campaign for Real Recycling members claimed Defra failed to implement directive correctly

Three named as finalist in Local Government Young Solicitor award Lawyers from two London boroughs and Bristol City Council make shortlist

Former council leader jailed for misconduct in a public office Defendant sentenced to 18 months in prison in case related to purchase of properties

Colleges, academies and universities put up to £140m in legal work up for grabs Lots in framework agreement are for 'national one-stop shop' and 13 regions

Law Society issues practice note on SRA rules for in-house practice Note covers a range of issues, including circumstances where working for clients other than employer is permitted

Council brings first 20 prosecutions under pioneering licensing scheme for rental properties Borough says it has capacity to bring 500 cases in first 12 months

Local authority protocols on homeless young people "fail to comply with the law" Law Centres Network calls on councils to review their protocols urgently

District council backs plan to cut councillor numbers by 20%+ Move could save local authority £100,000 if implemented 

Local authority appeal panels "should hear appeals for all schools": AJTC Chair of Administrative Justice and Tribunals Council says academies, voluntary aided and foundation schools should all be covered

Home builders body beefs up team to ensure representation at all local plan examinations Federation claims that some local authorities are failing to conduct an 'objective assessment' of their housing needs

Brussels issues guide on EU rules and services of general economic interest Guide provides answers to most frequent questions asked by public authorities, service users and providers

LGA hails health objective in licensing, but warns on minimum pricing Association expresses concern that measures in Alcohol Strategy consultation only tackle symptoms of excessive drinking and not root cause

CCGs to be under legal duty to secure health services for children with SEN

Council to pay out £50,000+ after failings over asbestos in schools 

Sales under revamped Right to Buy double, says DCLG

See all of our most recent news stories

Featured courses on Local Government Law TV

Practicalities of Compromise £35.00
You Save: 50.00%
This course provides some practical points on the art of compromise in litigation, with reference to recent case law, and looks at how to ensure that compromise agreements are legally valid and enforceable.
Social Media in the Workplace £35.00
You Save: 50.00%
The law has struggled to keep up with the implications of the use of social media at work. This course identifies where the main legal issues for employers are likely to arise and analyses the approaches that employers should take.
Support for People from Abroad £50.00
You Save: 50.00%
This course outlines and explain the incidence and extent of duties owed by local authorities to key groups of people and families from abroad residing in their areas.

All courses are CPD-qualifying. Your first course is FREE.

Departmental subscriptions from £495 + VAT for 12 months unlimited access.
Click here for details.

New articles on Local Government Lawyer

NoonRegistering town and village greens: the biggest cases of 2012
2012 saw a significant throughput of litigation in relation to town and village greens. Paul Wilmshurst analyses the key rulings and looks ahead to the next 12 months.

The use of Teckal company structures in public service: part 2 - mutualisation
Amy Auton-Smith and Simon Thomas look at some of the legal issues arising in relation to using a Teckal company to kick-start a move towards public service mutualisation, with a focus upon private companies limited by shares as the preferred vehicle.

Silence is not necessarily golden
Gordon Exall considers the practical issues that arise from the principle that a court can draw adverse inferences from a party's failure to adduce evidence on an issue.

Whistleblowing - new challenges for employers
Ceri Widdett examines the potential impact on employers of proposed reforms to whistle-blowing legislation.

A robust approach
The Court of Protection team at 39 Essex Street  analyses a High Court judge's approach to the strains on the Official Solicitor in accepting invitations to act in health and welfare applications and the appointment of family members as a litigation friend.

The Court of Protection and practice points from the Family Division
The team at 39 Essex Street examine some recent practice points from the Family Division that are relevant to the Court of Protection.

Homeless families - when is a family accommodated "together"?
The Supreme Court has just made an important decision about what counts as suitable accommodation for a homeless family. Stephen McNamara looks at some of the issues.

Procurement law reform: where are we now?
Richard Auton, Anna Sweeney and Andrew Uprichard look at the progress of the EU's planned procurement reforms. 

Agricultural buildings - the 'reasonably necessary' test under Part 6
There are potential pitfalls for local planning authorities when it comes to agricultural buildings and the 'reasonably necessary' test under Part 6, writes Martin Goodall.

The latest blogs...
UK doesn't like proposed EIA changes by Angus Walker
This entry reports on proposed changes to the regime of environmental impact assessment and the attitude of the UK government to them. 

Snap judgement: Do you think that the Local Government Minister Brandon Lewis's comments that monitoring officers are providing poor advice to their authorities underlines the need for monitoring to be legally-qualified?

Yes - A proper understanding of the law is essential to do the job to the required standard

No - A focus on legal technicalities can prevent MOs from taking a wider view

Click here to vote now

And some you may have missed....

Adult Social Services: Mid-Staffs NHS Trust - the lessons for local authorities Olwen Dutton and Peter Keith-Lucas consider the important lessons for local authorities arising out of the Mid-Staffordshire NHS Trust inquiry report.

Children's Services: The GCSE result is in The High Court has dismissed the claims for judicial review of the award of GCSE English qualifications in the summer of 2012. Rachel Kamm explains why.

Community Safety: Dealing with anti-social behaviour - the proposed new tools Following publication of the draft Anti-Social Behaviour Bill, Donna McCarthy looks at the tools that are to be made available.

Employment: Telling tales out of school A recent Employment Appeal Tribunal case involving a school dinner lady raised the issue of the balance between public authority employees' duties of confidentiality and their right to freedom of expression. Paul Greatorex analyses the ruling.

Governance: Information caselaw update Eleanor Grey QC provides an overview of the most significant developments in information caselaw over the past month.

Housing: Flexible tenancies, security and succession Alec Samuels considers the background to the new flexible council tenancy and the phasing out of security and succession.

Licensing: The four licensing priorities Leo Charalambides considers the significance of a High Court judge's remarks on the administrative nature of licensing determinations and the promotion of the public interest.

Litigation: Why not change the rules on judicial review? David Cameron's remarks on judicial review, and the consultation report that followed, need a thoughtful response and local authorities will find much to be pleased about if they dig a little deeper into the proposals, believes Graeme Creer.

Planning: Development management under the Localism Act A significant High Court ruling has shown that the Localism Act changed nothing when it comes to the fundamentals of the development management system, writes Martin Goodall.

Procurement: Comparison or evaluation? Jenny Beresford-Jones analyses a recent procurement case where a property developer sued a council over the introduction of a 'Plan B' proposal.

Property: When a house is (arguably) not a home When does the use of a dwelling house for commercial holiday lettings amount to a material change of use? Ian de Prez and Estelle Dehon explain the background to a key ruling by the Court of Appeal.

Regulatory: State of play David Merson analyses a High Court ruling on rarely used powers for local planning authorities to act in cases where land and buildings are adversely affecting on the amenity of the neighbourhood.

Local Government Law.tv

We are pleased to announce the introduction of an annual corporate subscription that will provide access to a full year of CPD accredited legal training for your lawyers and your client departments

What is included

  • unlimited access to the full library of webinar content for 12 months
  • the option to purchase DVD copies of the webinar training
  • discounted rates offered to attend LGG training courses
 Who can take the training?
  • lawyers and other professionals within your team, each of whom will be provided with personal login to enable them to earn and keep a record of their individual CPD credit.
  • members of your client departments, such as the child protection team, trading standards officers, planners, procurement professionals or social workers. On purchasing a corporate subscription, a client account login will be provided for use by your client departments to view online content at no extra charge.
What is the cost?
  • the cost relates to the numbers of individual registered users per authority, excluding those who use the client account.  These users will be registered for the full year of the subscription with the option to replace a registered user if somebody leaves the authority during the year of subscription.  Option 1 below
  • a DVD option will supply a DVD for every webinar booked – Option 2 below
  • in addition to option 1 a DVD can be purchased for an individual webinar at an additional £15 + VAT if required.  This can be ordered when booking the webinar
  • for a shared legal service serving more than one authority area, references to the number of registered users are to the combined aggregate number of users from the relevant authorities
  • registered users of a corporate subscription will benefit from discounted offers to attend LGG training events during the 12 months.
  Option 1
Online only
Option 2
Online + DVD
Individual subscription £199 (+VAT) £349 (+VAT)
Local authority with up to 10 registered users £495 (+VAT) £945 (+VAT)
Local authority with 10 – 30 registered users £995 (+VAT) £1750 (+VAT)
Local authority with more than 30 registered users £1295 (+VAT) £2295 (+VAT)
Law firms with up to 20 registered users £995 (+VAT) £1750 (+VAT)
Law firms with 20+ registered users £1500 (+VAT) £2495 (+VAT)
 How to register for a corporate subscription
Individual subscriptions can be purchased online at www.localgovernmentlaw.tv.
To set up a corporate account please contact Derek Bedlow on 0207 239 4917 or derek.bedlow@localgovernmentlaw.tv giving details of your authority, the number of users you would like to register and if you would like to take the DVD option for all booked webinars.
We will then contact you within 24 hours to confirm this subscription has been set up.  The corporate subscription members will then be able to register on the site and instantly access the webinar training.
Alternatively, if you would like to pay-as-you-go for webinar training by setting up a corporate pay-as-you-go account for your authority a monthly invoice will be produced and a 10% discount will be applied to all purchases by members of your authority.
There is also the option to take a free trial of a webinar (which includes CPD credit).  Register as a user on www.localgovernmentlaw.tv  and add your preferred course to the cart. During the checkout process, enter FREE TRIAL in the box where indicated (don't forget to click 'Submit'), and the cost of your course will be reduced to zero. Complete the process and your course will be instantly available to view and you can watch it as many times as required for 30 days, from any computer or most mobile devices.

Click here to see all courses on Local Government Law.tv (102)

Head of Legal Services, Tameside MBC. To £70,000.

Jobs of the week

Merton and Richmond Shared Legal Service
We need lawyers to drive innovative legal and commercial strategies whilst delivering increased efficiencies from the authorities’ legal activities. We want positive, adaptable people who relish working in a challenging, exciting environment and who are willing to engage and contribute fully to the continuing success of the service as it develops. We are recruiting experienced practitioners to the following posts:

Planning Lawyer

Commercial Property Lawyers


Managing Lawyer and Deputy Monitoring Officer
A rare opportunity has arisen for a Managing Lawyer and Deputy Monitoring Officer to join a local authority in the Northern Home Counties on a locum basis for a minimum of four months.

Planning Solicitor
This busy public sector body is keen to add an experienced Planning Solicitor to its legal team to assist with a particularly busy period.

Interim Principal Legal Officer
A highly regarded local authority in London is looking for a Principal Legal Officer to join its litigation and corporate team.

Commercial Contracts Lawyer
An excellent opportunity has arisen for a Contracts and Procurement Lawyer to join a local authority in the North West.

Commercial Property Lawyer
Our client in the East of England is seeking a Commercial Property Lawyer.

Civil and Criminal Prosecutions Solicitor
A local authority in Yorkshire is recruiting a Civil and Criminal Prosecutions Solicitor to join on a locum basis. 

Other featured jobs

Public Sector Locum Solicitor
An immediate opportunity has arisen for a qualified Locum Solicitor to join a public sector body in the South West. You will provide cover until a permanent person is recruited. 

Employment Lawyer
This local authority in the Southern Home Counties is seeking an experienced Employment and Education Locum to join its team as soon as possible.

Senior Contracts and Procurement Locum
A local authority in Kent needs a Senior Solicitor to join its commercial contracts and procurement team. 

Housing Solicitor 
An excellent opportunity for a Housing Solicitor to join a public sector organisation based in the East Midlands.

Locum Prosecutions Lawyer
An opportunity has arisen for a Locum Prosecutions Lawyer in Staffordshire.

Childcare Solicitor
A local authority in Yorkshire is looking to recruit an experienced Childcare Solicitor.

Planning Lawyer
A friendly local authority in the South West is seeking a Planning Locum Lawyer for at least four months.

Search all jobs 


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