The first local authority to be granted an alternative business structure licence by the Solicitors Regulations Authority formally launched its new legal practice on Thursday.
Buckinghamshire Law Plus is a collaboration between Buckinghamshire County Council and the Buckinghamshire & Milton Keynes Fire Authority.
The 70-strong team will offer legal advice in the areas of education, employment, HR, dispute resolution, business, health and social care, property and infrastructure, data and regulatory.
Anne Davies, the council’s head of legal services, encouraged organisations to give the new practice a try and ‘test the water by instructing us on one or two matters’.
‘We are confident that they will be impressed with the expertise of our team, the calibre of advice that they receive and the value for money,’ she added.
Revenue-earning ABSs have become one way of responding to cuts in councils’ government funding over recent years.
HB Public Law became the second local authority shared services venture to be granted an ABS licence. The business comprises the merged legal teams of Harrow and Barnet councils in London.
Insurance broker RKH Group said it developed a bespoke insurance product specifically for the two council ABSs.
The broker explained it hopes to replicate the services for potential ABSs in other businesses such as supermarkets and niche associations.