A spinal cord injury charity has become the first organisation from the sector to own a stake in an alternative business structure law firm.
Aspire Law is the product of a collaboration between national charity Aspire and personal injury firm Moore Blatch. The ABS application has been approved by the Solicitors Regulation Authority and is the first of its kind since non-lawyers were allowed to invest in and own legal businesses.
The new entity will form a social enterprise model focusing on the needs and requirements of clients with spinal cord injuries. This could include advice on matters such as housing, education, care and rehabilitation.
Aspire Law said it will make no deduction of fees from the compensation awarded to clients and will allow clients to keep 100% of their damages.
As a joint partner, the charity will receive 50% of profits to reinvest into projects such as its programme to provide accessible accommodation to patients discharged from hospital.
Damian Horan, legal director of Aspire Law, said: ‘Before agreeing on the structure of the business, considerable research was completed into client experiences, expectations and concerns around legal claims resulting from spinal injuries. The feedback received was incredibly valuable and this information directly influenced the final business model.
‘We believe Aspire Law will provide genuine competition within the market, as the business uses an innovative solution that combines strong legal expertise with charitable values, putting the needs of those with spinal cord injury above all else.’
Brian Carlin, chief executive of Aspire, said the income generated will help people with spinal cord injuries who are not in a position to receive compensation but still require care.
He added that the founding partners will ensure all claims ‘achieve optimum and timely settlements’ to most benefit claimants.
The new business will formally begin trading on 3 November.
Moore Blatch has 240 staff including 33 partners and has offices in Southampton, Lymington, Richmond, Whiteley and London.