National firm Irwin Mitchell will have access to more than 1,500 rugby clubs in England after agreeing to take over a legal helpline.

The firm will run the service for England Rugby and also provide online document service for member clubs across the country.

Clubs are able to access the legal and tax helpline 24/7 every day of the year, as well as download legal document templates such as contracts and GDPR notices.

Irwin Mitchell became the official legal partner for England Rugby last year and has held virtual events during lockdown for around 750 people from the rugby community, giving advice on topics including furloughing and holding virtual annual general meetings.

Angus Bujalski, the RFU’s legal and governance director, said: ‘The legal and tax helpline, together with the legal document checking service, is an important support to our clubs to help them navigate through challenging times. 

‘Having these in place, together with the recent legal webinar series, means that our clubs have access to the support network of a large full-service law firm when they most need it.’

Irwin Mitchell is also piloting a legal health-check service with several clubs with the aim of rolling the programme out wider over the coming months.

The firm has also backed a new mentoring programme for young players which will create a community of mentors for teenage players with the aim of keeping more of them involved in the sport.