Overview

We know the challenges you face as charities and not-for-profit organisations. We recognise the commercial decisions you need to make while never losing sight of your charitable roots.

We tailor our advice to take into account factors such as; reputation and brand protection, risk, income streams and costs, organisational culture and aspirations for the future, to ensure that any decision is in your best interest. We provide you with the information you need to give you the confidence to take swift and decisive action when you need to. We have a multi-disciplinary charities team which offers complete legal support with the right blend of expertise and experience.

Key contact

Always keen to explore fresh ideas, Emma encourages innovation in the teams she leads, having recently hosted events on mindfulness and well-being, gender diversity and leadership forums as well as promoting campaigns that are important to our client base and CSR/fundraising initiatives.

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Our charity partnerships

Our work with charities on a local and national level plays a huge part in our day to day life. We work with a large range of charities, some of which we support through fundraising and donations, and others we partner with where our areas of work cross paths. You can find out more about our support of charities here.

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Our expertise

Legacy dispute services
 

With contested wills on the rise, charities are keen to avoid the emotional, financial and reputational costs of legacy disputes. Our specialist team understands that legacy officers and trustees have a challenging role; to manage risk, make the most of opportunities and ensure decision-making is in the best interests of the charity. We can provide practical guidance on the options available to charities when faced with a legacy dispute, helping to navigate the legal minefield and help protect this much needed source of income.

Employment services
 

Depending on their size, activity and degree of maturity, a charity will require tailored support when dealing with HR matters. The requirements range from assisting charities on how to meet their legal obligations as employers to helping them deal with particular challenges, including relationships with volunteers. These can arise at an employee level, such as dealing with an individual’s poor performance or ill health, or at organisation-wide level such as the adoption of a new reward framework or restructuring.

Commercial property services
 

Our property specialists are experienced in delivering a full range of property and planning services to charities and social enterprises. Our 40 strong team consists of lawyers who are consistently recognised as leaders in their field. Our property team works closely with our construction law experts and property dispute resolution team to provide a comprehensive service providing advice on all aspects of estate management and commercial property issues including:

  • acquisitions and disposals; 
  • agreements for leases; 
  • development and construction agreements; and 
  • dispute resolution. 
Corporate services
 

We assist numerous organisations to establish charities or social enterprises and are frequently instructed by organisations that have a long history in the sector. We can advise on partnership working arrangements where organisations wish to work together towards a common goal and need to protect their interests as well as setting up a new organisation. This involves:

  • guiding organisations through the options available to ensure the right legal structure with a clear direction on the pros and cons to help balance risks; 
  • arranging appropriate constitutional documents;
  • dealing with the registration process with the Charity Commission; and 
  • giving the organisation the best start through provision of policies and contracts. 

Quotes

Hugh James is singled out for its […] ‘deep understanding’ of charity law and its regulatory framework

Chambers and Partners UK

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