More charities are choosing to work together for a number of reasons, from financial to providing a better service for beneficiaries. Our charity solicitors have advised on a number of significant mergers, and on collaborations short of merger where charities work together but remain separate organisations as opposed to becoming one entity.

We advise on:  

  • reviewing and amending constitutions;
  • resolving governance, human resources and potential deal-blocking issues;
  • preparing suitable transfer agreements;
  • creation of group structures, subsidiaries and new bodies;
  • due diligence and structures to manage risk;
  • employment issues including TUPE and pensions;
  • property issues relevant to mergers and collaborations;
  • establishing suitable collaborative arrangements;
  • obtaining Charity Commission and OSCR approvals;
  • providing support to trustees during the course of a merger; and
  • the winding-up and/or striking-off of organisations and the register of charity mergers.

Our clients and our work

Mergers and collaborations we have advised on include:

  • St Mungo merging with Broadway;
  • Prostate Cancer UK merging with Prostate Action;
  • Volunteering England's merger with NCVO;
  • Charities Evaluation Services' merger with NCVO;
  • the association between Action for Blind People and Royal National Institute of Blind People to form the RNIB Group by way of a novel group structure; and
  • the creation of a single unitary group structure for Brook.

For more information, please contact:

James Sinclair Taylor - +44 (0)20 8394 6480 / James.Taylor@russell-cooke.co.uk

Andrew Studd - +44 (0)20 8394 6414 / Andrew.Studd@russell-cooke.co.uk

Charity Law Association

The Charity Law Association currently has over 900 members including many of the country's largest charities and leading charity lawyers. Members or their representatives are able to attend quarterly meetings at which charity law and related issues are discussed. All members of the team are members of the Charity Law Association.

charitylawassociation.org.uk

National Council of Voluntary Organisations

NCVO (The National Council for Voluntary Organisations) is a registered charity, which gives voice and support to civil society. Russell-Cooke are an approved consultant of the NCVO. NCVO believes passionately in the voluntary and community sector and are the largest umbrella body for the voluntary and community sector in England with sister councils in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

www.ncvo.org.uk

Charges are usually based on hourly rates plus administrative charges and disbursements but we are flexible with regard to charging rates and will discuss with you budgets for work on a particular matter, or, where it is not entirely clear how things will develop, for the initial stages or a particular stage of a matter.  We will always provide you with an initial estimate of your likely legal costs and will update this as your requirements or the circumstances of the work change.

In circumstances where we can more or less either anticipate the work to be done or prescribe the work, we can act on a fixed or capped fee basis.

We would be pleased to discuss your requirements free of charge and tailor a costs proposal accordingly.

It is fundamental to our policy on allocating work that one of the factors we will consider is the likely cost outcome of using particular solicitors for particular pieces of work.  Whilst almost invariably a partner will be able to carry out work more quickly than a less experienced solicitor, a less experienced solicitor under appropriate supervision may be able to produce a more cost effective result.  Partner input is more likely to be appropriate and cost-effective in more complex or more specialised matters.

Office of Public Sector Information (OPSI)

Operating from within the National Archives, the Office of Public Sector Information (OPSI) is at the heart of information policy, setting standards, delivering access and encouraging the re-use of public sector information. OPSI provides a wide range of services to the public, information industry, government and the wider public sector relating to finding, using, sharing and trading information.

opsi.gov.uk

Charity Commission - Supporting Charities

The Charity Commission registers and regulates charities in England and Wales. We offer them advice and provide a wide range of services and guidance to help them run as effectively as possible. We also keep the online Register of Charities, which provides information about each of the thousands of registered charities in England and Wales.

charitycommission.gov.uk

National Council for Voluntary Organisations

NCVO (The National Council for Voluntary Organisations) is a registered charity, which gives voice and support to civil society. Russell-Cooke are an approved consultant of the NCVO. NCVO believes passionately in the voluntary and community sector and are the largest umbrella body for the voluntary and community sector in England with sister councils in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Click here for further information

ACEVO

ACEVO is the Association of Chief Executives of Voluntary Organisations. They connect, develop and represent the third sector's leaders. They have over 2000 members. They have been providing support and advice to their members for 20 years.

acevo.org.uk

The Charity Finance Directors' Group (CFDG)

The Charity Finance Directors' Group is a membership organisation set up in 1987 and specialises in helping charities to manage their accounting, taxation, audit and other finance related functions.

cfdg.org.uk

Directory of Social Change (DSC)

Directory of Social Change (DSC) is an independent charity with a vision of an independent voluntary sector at the heart of social change. They achieve this by providing essential information and training to the voluntary sector to enable charities to achieve their mission.

dsc.org.uk

Office of the Third Sector

As part of the Cabinet Office, the Office of the Third Sector (OTS) leads work across government to support the environment for a thriving third sector (voluntary and community groups, social enterprises, charities, cooperatives and mutuals), enabling the sector to campaign for change, deliver public services, promote social enterprise and strengthen communities. The OTS was created at the centre of government in May 2006 in recognition of the increasingly important role the third sector plays in both society and the economy.

cabinetoffice.gov.uk/thirdsector

CTN - The trustee network

CTN’s vision is of positive, effective trustees governing voluntary and community sector organisations. It works to achieve this by: increasing trustees’ access to information, guidance and support through networks, a website, signposting and services; and developing understanding and awareness of trusteeship and governance. CTN was founded in 1998 by a group of trustees who found that meeting together enhanced their motivation and effectiveness within their charitable organisations. There are now many networks around the country which provide networking and support opportunities to over 500 trustees a year. We also listen to the concerns of trustees and make sure that these are heard at a national level, through our partnerships, consultations and submissions. We regularly organise events to support trustees and hear their views; these range from a small working group lunch to our Annual Lecture for 300 trustees. Where possible, we work with partners to achieve positive outcomes for trustees.

trusteenet.org.uk

Lasting Transformations

The Charity and Social Business Team at Russell-Cooke works in partnership with Lasting Transformation, a consultancy established by experienced strategic leaders Shan Nicholas and Susie Parsons which support Boards and Senior Management Teams to secure stability, sustainability and success.

Click here for further information

Prospectus

Prospectus is a specialist recruitment consultancy and recruitment advertising and design agency working exclusively with the not for profit sector. Their clients include charities, social enterprises, universities, health agencies, arts bodies, membership organisations and government departments. They work collaboratively with not for profit ‘umbrella’ organisations like NCVO and ACEVO.

prospect-us.co.uk

The London Voluntary Service Council (LVSC)

The London Voluntary Service Council (LVSC) is a strategic and independent voice for London's voluntary and community sector. They support London's 60,000 plus voluntary and community organisations to improve the lives of Londoners.

lvsc.org.uk

ivo

ivo is a charity that promotes and enables volunteering and social action. ivo do this primarily through the use of digital technologies with their main projects being the ivo.org social platform and Do-it.org, the UK's largest volunteering service.

Click here for further information