• We have a team of expert lawyers who specialise in administrative and public law. We are leading firm who act for many public sector bodies as well as those entities who interact with public sector. This means our work in this field sits at the heart of many of the firm’s practice areas. We understand that administrative and public law considerations run through all aspects of decision making, policy and procedure for many of our clients, and that getting the right approach is key to managing risk. Our administrative and public law team operate across a wide range of sectors including:

    • local government;
    • health;
    • ombudsmen; 
    • financial services;
    • education;
    • police and crime commissioners;
    • fire and rescue authorities;
    • regulators; and
    • housing associations.

    The breadth and depth of our experience enables us to deliver pragmatic and cost effective advice to our clients.

    They're really very good quality; they're incredibly knowledgeable lawyers and their drafting is excellent…they are very approachable, very pragmatic in the advice they give us and very knowledgeable in the areas that we've instructed them on.

    Chambers, 2021

     Working with clients

    A key part of our practice is advisory work which includes providing early input on decision making in relation to:

    • the lawful exercise of powers;
    • vires;
    • jurisdiction;
    • consultation;
    • Equality Act duties;
    • governance; and
    • risks associated with particular decisions and projects, including around cuts to services and restructuring.

    Our public law litigation experience, covers all aspects of Judicial Review challenges and statutory appeals in the High Court, Court of Appeal and Supreme Court. We have extensive experience acting for Claimants, Defendants, Interested Parties and Interveners. We advise on the two-stage procedure specific to Judicial Review, the duty of candour and disclosure obligations, dealing with urgent applications, and advising on strategy and when to concede as well as consequential orders including on costs. We have particular expertise in acting for clients in complex, politically sensitive, high profile and multi-party Judicial Review challenges and supporting clients with the wider practical and reputational considerations they present.

    We are ranked in tier 2 for administrative and public law in Legal 500 and as band 2 in Chambers and Partners.

    Knowledgeable, thorough, with a practical implementation where needed and pleasant to work with.

    Legal 500, 2021

    Recent highlights

    • We acted for the South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner in R (on the application of David Crompton) v South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner and Others [2017] EWHC 1349 (Admin) in a high profile claim by the former Chief Constable of South Yorkshire Police, following his suspension and call for resignation by the Commissioner in light of the outcome of the Hillsborough Inquests. This was the first case concerning the scope of the Commissioner’s powers to suspend and call for a Chief Constable’s resignation under the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011.
    • We acted for NHS England in the successful defence of a Judicial Review challenge brought by the British Homeopathic Association against NHS England's decision to include homeopathy in guidance for medicine and treatment items which should not routinely be prescribed by GPs (R (British Homeopathic Association) v. National Health Service Commissioning Board [2018] EWHC 1359 (Admin)).
    • We represented Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust in a Judicial Review challenge to a decision by Westminster City Council to grant planning permission for the development of the Paddington Cube in the vicinity of St Mary's Hospital, London.
    • We acted for Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust in the case of Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust v Barnet CCG [2018]. The Trust challenged the CCG's decision to tender community ophthalmology services on the basis of sub-tariff pricing.
    • We acted for the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman in the case of Rochdale Metropolitan Council v. Local Government and Social Care (unreported).
    • We represented Scarborough Borough Council in the successful defence of a challenge by way of Judicial Review against the Council's decision to demolish and redevelop the site of a historic local theatre.
    • We acted on a five year collective action on behalf of the Local Government Association and almost all local authorities in England and Wales thousands of restitution claims brought pursuant to the Environmental Information Regulations 2004 (EIR) for the recovery of property search fees. The case included a reference to the European Court of Justice regarding the proper interpretation of the EIR. We also acted for local authorities in respect of a New Burdens application to Central Government.
  • Public Law
    We are advising clients on decision making in view of the restrictions on holding meetings in person, and changes in the law being introduced to enable public bodies to be more flexible in their approach to decision making. We are also advising clients on the implications of social distancing and social isolation for engagement and consultation processes necessary in the context of public bodies seeking to reconfigure services.

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