A reputation for delivering results
Our education sector expertise
DMH Stallard has a long history of supporting organisations in the education sector. We have acted for leading educational establishments, including universities, colleges, academies, educational businesses and charities for many years and enjoy long-term strategic relationships with many.
Our respected and responsive education team handles substantial and complex legal matters for providers of adult education, early year’s education, education services as well as foundation schools, independent schools, special and specialist education providers and regulators.
We have in-depth understanding of the unique issues that organisations in the education sector face – from obtaining funding and achieving other business objectives through to the more subtle issues such as student relationships. We are all too aware that the education sector continues to experience unprecedented levels of change and pressure, with increasing financial demands being managed alongside regular legislative change and rising internal challenges.
The services we provide to clients in the education sector
Our employment lawyers will help you adopt a consistent and fair approach to employment matters to meet your legal obligations and we can help train your managers to effectively implement employment policies and procedures so you are in the best possible position to defend any claims that may arise. If Employment Tribunal Claims (including discrimination and unfair dismissal) do arise we will help you defend them. We will also provide you with strategic advice and operational support. We will help you during a restructure (including providing advice on redundancy and TUPE), or to meet the requirements for business immigration. We can also provide you with advice on the sensitive issues surrounding pupil or parental rights.
Our commercial lawyers will help you make the most out of any commercial contracts or joint ventures your organisation wishes to enter into. They will help you strategically plan the procurement process then provide on-going support throughout the tendering process and provide advice on how to implement contracts, as well as how best to avoid disputes. We can also help by providing advice on constitutional and regulatory issues as well as on charity law and donation agreements. We can also help with franchising and the creation of academies. We also specialise in the protection and exploition of intellectual property.
Data is a hot topic in every sector but particularly in education. We can help your organisation comply with data subject access requests, GDPR and DPA issues, or Freedom of Information (FOI) requests in time. We will also ensure staff are trained so that they are familiar with procedures and legislation.
Our corporate lawyers will help you set up and take advantage of alternative corporate vehicles such as charities, trusts, companies and partnerships and then work with you to effectively manage those vehicles to provide an economic advantage. We will also provide advice on project financing to help your organisation to continue growing.
Our intellectual property lawyers will work to safeguard your intellectual property rights. We will provide you with advice on trade marks, patents, design rights, copyright, database rights, confidential information and know how, unfair competition and trading practices, employee management and all related contractual, competition and reputational issues.
Lots of educational establishments have diverse property portfolios. Our real estate lawyers will help your organisation with portfolio management and achieving “best value” from your property assets whether through the sale and disposal of surplus properties and or through effective management of estates, often in partnership with the private sector. We can provide advice on leases, on any restrictions on your land or any problems with drainage, rights of way and adverse possession. We have a specialist planning team who work with our Real Estate lawayers to provide expert advise on campus development and student accommodation or other school property projects.
If any problems arise, whether commercial, contractual disputes, abuse of intellectual property rights or the misuse of confidential information, our dispute resolution lawyers will work to resolve them quickly and achieve as desirable an outcome as possible.
How we've helped
Among our most recent work in the education sector:
- We currently advise a University in relation to a review and restructuring of its arrangements for engagement of lecturers
- We act for a Further Education college in relation to collaborative arrangements with the private sector for delivery of educational services
- We work in partnership with a large South East independent co-educational school, most recently advising in relation to highly sensitive and complex issues relating to pupil and parental rights, and the school’s obligations in relation to those. We have also advised in relation to data protection, disclosure and confidentiality of information, and the statutory complaints procedure.
- We are currently working for a large South East college on an upcoming major development project.
- We are advising an international further education group in relation to a challenging procurement process with various UK universities.