Our specialist approach
Local government encompasses a wide range of bodies and personnel, whose responsibilities, powers, priorities and activities vary enormously. Its impact is felt by everyone, whether individuals, businesses or other organisations. Arden Chambers has long-standing expertise in this sector founded on specialist knowledge and experience of the complex legal framework within which local government operates, together with an understanding of its practical effect on individuals and organisations.
We recognise that working in this field involves particular care and responsibility.
- For individual clients, we are involved with their fundamental and sometimes most sensitive rights.
- For local government bodies and decision-makers, we appreciate the importance of the public interest, proper processes, and the challenges presented by reductions in resources.
- For other organisations, be they companies, charities, trusts or voluntary groups, we are frequently asked to assist in the protection of vital interests in property, development, commerce and service provision.
Members of Chambers are involved in writing many of the leading publications in the field, including Local Government Constitutional and Administrative Law, Local Government Finance Law and Practice, and Encyclopedia of Local Government Law (all Sweet & Maxwell).
We work throughout England and Wales (and in other jurisdictions) in all courts and tribunals. We offer advice on individual cases and on the formulation and drafting of strategies and policies.
Our Mediation Service offers qualified mediators as well as specialist advocates, providing clients with an effective route to ADR.
The areas in which we have particular expertise include
- Vires and governance – including compliance, structures, partnership working, exercise of powers, maladministration and ombudsman challenges, investigations, ethics, overview and scrutiny and trouble-shooting
- Local government finance – annual budget-setting process, grants and subsidies, capital finance, borrowing, council tax reduction schemes, charging, fiduciary duty and the acquisition and disposal of property
- Procurement – Public Contracts Regulations 2015 requirements, incorporating equalities into procurement and commissioning
- Public sector savings and resources – advice on restrictions of adult social care, library closure, reductions in welfare benefits and housing provision, paying for special police services, cessation of funding for voluntary sector organisations, disposal of assets and land, outsourcing of functions
- Data Protection and Freedom of Information – internal and external data sharing, subject access requests, dealing with the ICO
- Cross-cutting issues – tackling complex matters such as regeneration and development, human rights and equalities, worklessness, offending, community safety, family support and intervention and improved outcomes for children through housing and education
- Service Provision – including housing, public health, anti-social behaviour and community safety, education and children’s services, adult social care, regulatory work, property and planning.