Legal Panel Firm Services

LPF Panel ()

Guide to Instructing Legal Panel Firms

We worked with the Legal Panel Framework firms to pull together guidance on how to instruct and how to get the most out of your initial instruction to one of the firms.  The guidance is available for everyone and more information can be found in the tab below.

Free 20 minute Helpline

As part of the Legal Panel Framework, each of the firms has committed to provide a free 20-minute helpline to sport and recreation organisations.  The helplines are available to all Sport and Recreation Alliance members and/or all organisations funded by UK Sport, Sport Wales and Sport England.  To find out more about the helpline select the tab below.

Pro-Bono Legal Fund

Each firm on the panel has committed to provide up to £5,000 worth of work free per year to the sport and recreation sector. Access to the free legal assistance is managed through a central application route coordinated by the Sport and Recreation Alliance.  The Pro-Bono Legal Fund is only available to sport and recreation organisations who meet eligibility criteria under the fund.  To find out more about whether you are eligible to apply to the fund and for more information, look at the tab below.

We recognise instructing law firms can be a challenging task, so we have worked alongside Sport England, UK Sport and Sport Wales and in collaboration with legal panel firms to produce guidance.

This guidance will help you be effective for your organisation and get good value for money from your lawyers.  You will be able to understand:

  • how to assess if you need a lawyer or not to help with an issue
  • what basic information to provide your lawyer with from the outset to ensure bespoke and direct advice can be provided
  • the questions you need to ask your lawyer to ensure you are clear on their process and costs
  • what you can expect from your lawyer.

As part of the guidance we have also developed a template instructing form for you to fill in and use when you contact one of the panel firms.

You can download our guide to instructing a firm here.

Template instruction form is available to download here

In addition to the individual services already offered by each firm on the Legal Panel Framework, each of the panel firms has committed to providing a free 20-minute helpline service to sport and recreation organisations. 

FirmContact personContact details
Bates Wells BraithwaiteThea Longley020 7551 7831
BrabnersJason Smith016 1836 8813
DolmansJustin Harris029 2072 7305
Farrer & CoDavid Hunt020 3375 7214
GateleyJohn Burns016 1836 7923
Hewitson Moorhead
Christine Bowyer-Jones020 7400 6574
 Ben Moorhead020 7400 5047
MuckleJohn Devine019 1211 7905
Thomas EggarFaye Bargery012 9374 2755
 Thomas Barnard012 9374 2777
Wright HassallChristine Jackson019 2688 0774

When you contact any firm on the panel you must:

  • specify that you wish to use the helpline service and quote LPF2012
  • confirm your membership and/or funding relationship with the Sport and Recreation Alliance, Sport England, UK Sport or Sport Wales.

Please note the information below on how to use the helpline.

Use of the helpline across the firms will be monitored. We ask you to use the helpline appropriately and respect the generous offering from the panel firms by following the rules below:

  • The 20-minutes free time applies to the first call on new queries/matters only. It does not cover a matter where the firm is already acting for you or dealing with any correspondence in relation to it.
  • This is not a call centre helpline and firms may not be able to answer your call immediately. Please do leave a message and the lawyer will return your call as soon as possible.
  • The service covers the call to the designated point of contact for the firm, or on some occasions, when they refer you on to a specialist in that firm to discuss your initial query.
  • If you have contacted another firm on the same query please let the lawyer know. Please note the collaborators and panel firms will be monitoring use by national governing bodies and repeated requests to different firms on the same query will be followed up with the organisation.
  • Check if the firm covers the area of law that you require assistance on before contacting them.

The Pro-Bono Fund brokers free legal advice from the Legal Panel Framework firms to small national governing bodies (NGBs) and sport and recreation organisations.

Each firm on the panel has committed to provide up to £5,000 worth of free advice per year to the sport and recreation sector.

Who is eligible to apply to the Fund?

Organisations must meet the following criteria to be eligible to apply for the pro-bono fund:

  • The organisation must have a turnover of less than £500,000.00 (this is inclusive of grant income).
  • The organisation must have no budget set aside for legal expenses.
  • The organisation must have no paid legal staff.
  • The organisation must be a member of the Sport and Recreation Alliance and/or be a national governing body funded by UK Sport, Sport England or Sport Wales

Please Note: Organisations who meet the eligibility criteria are not automatically entitled to an award from the fund. Decisions to make an award are at the discretion of the collaborators (Sport England, UK Sport, the Sport and Recreation Alliance and Sport Wales).

What areas of law will the Fund be able to assist you with?

Small NGBs and sport and recreation organisations who meet the eligibility criteria will be able to apply to the fund for free legal assistance with the following areas of law:

  • Charity & Trust Law including CASC registration
  • Child Protection/Vulnerable Groups (DBS, Protection of Freedoms Act)
  • Simple Contracts/Grant Agreements
  • Corporate Law/Governance/Constitutional Affairs
  • Employment Law
  • Insolvency Law
  • Property Law (such as leases, licences and security of tenure)

Please note: The pro-bono fund will not be available for assistance with disputes or contentious matters and organisations will only be eligible to receive one successful application per year.

How do you apply to the Fund?

Access to the free legal assistance is managed through a central application route coordinated by the Sport and Recreation Alliance.

Once an application is successful, the Legal Panel Framework firms are contacted to confirm who is available to provide advice on the matter.

When a firm confirms they are able to help, the Sport and Recreation Alliance puts the organisation in touch with the firm and they liaise directly with each other from that point.

A unique reference number will be given to the organisation which they must provide to the firm at the outset of the matter.

Applications to access the free legal advice must be submitted to:

LPFprobono@sportandrecreation.org.uk

To apply, organisations must download and fill in the application form which is available belowand send it along with a copy of the organisation’s latest audited annual accounts, business plan or financial information.

When will you find out if your application has been successful?

Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis - the timescales are outlined below.  Applications received after the 20th of the month will not be considered until the following month.

Application deadline20th of each month
Application reviewed30th of each month
Decision notification2 weeks after 30th

Downloads:

Pro-Bono Fund Application Form

Pro-Bono Fund Factsheet

Legal Panel Framework Service Charter