Legal Sites and Resources in the UK, K to Q

Property, planning, conveyancing, legislation, parliament, local government, marketing, military, Ministry of Justice, partnership, pensions, personal injury, medical negligence, politics and public law.

New in June 2016.
New Guide produced on The Judicial System of England and Wales:

  • A new guide called "The Judicial System of England and Wales" has been published by The International Team of the Judicial Office. The guide is introduced by Lady Justice Arden, Head of International Relations for the Judiciary of England and Wales with the following words: "What you see today has evolved over 1,000 years; the judiciary is continuing to change and develop to meet the needs of our society and is widely regarded as one of the best and most independent in the world. To meet the needs of society, our legal system is also complex. The International Team of the Judicial Office has produced a Visitors’ Guide to bring together a wealth of information about our judiciary and legal system. It also provides an introduction to the work of organisations, such as the Ministry of Justice and the Crown Prosecution Service which support the justice system."

    You can find the new guide here. It is quite substantial - a downloadable pdf of 52 pages. Although billed as a Visitors Guide for International Judiciary it would be just as useful to law students or anyone else prepared to do a bit of serious reading on the subject.

    Legislation (Statutes)

  • Legislation.gov.uk is the official home of the revised enacted UK legislation, 1267 to the present, together with appropriate sections for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The site brings together the legislative content previously held on the OPSI website and revised legislation from the Statute Law Database to provide a single legislation service that replaces the current services. The OPSI and SLD websites are in the process of being decommissioned with users re-directed to this new service. The site is managed by The National Archives, a new UK government department and an executive agency of the Ministry of Justice. There is a section for Frequently Asked Questions which describes, in particular, the various ways in which the archive is not yet up to date (a serious problem for anyone wanting to rely on this site).

    Recent News

  • LexisWeb.co.uk is a relaunched version of the LexisNexis search engine that provides a great deal of free legal information and links into paid-for legal content from LexisNexis. It includes Acts and SI's (as enacted) and cases, which can be searched by practice area or by year. For digests or full transcripts, or consolidated legislation, you need a LexisNexis subscription. It is well designed and attractive, as well as easy to use, so it is a useful addition to the free legal resources available online although other resources, like BAILII and legislation.gov.uk provide similar material albeit in a different form.

    Parliaments

    Westminster (UK)...
  • Acts of Parliament since 1988 from Office of Public Sector Information (previously Her Majesty’s Stationery Office, HMSO)
  • Statutory Instruments since 1988 from OPSI

    The statutes are arranged in chronological order, by year, and they can also be searched.

    Note that the above sites provide legislation as passed by Parliament - there is no consolidation or indications of subsequent amendment.

  • The UK Parliamentary Site, which includes

  • The Stationery Office (for other government publications) Scotland.... Wales.....
  • Welsh Legislation
  • National Assembly for Wales
  • Wales Legislation Online set up by Cardiff Law School which seeks to set out the functions of the National Assembly by subject headings together with an explanation of the functions retained by central government in relation to Wales.

    Northern Ireland....

  • Northern Ireland Legislation
  • Northern Ireland Assembly (suspended at present)
  • Updated Statutes of Northern Ireland 1921 to 2004 from HMSO are now available. The site says: "This site reflects the statute law (primary legislation) at 31 December 2003 by taking the changes set out in the "Cumulative Supplement to the Statutes Revised" and integrating them into the Statutes of Northern Ireland from 1921 to 2003." In fact, even having the statutes back to 1921 is very good, since UK statutes are only available online back to 1988. There is also a full "Guide and Explanations" available on the site to describe the basis of the updating process.

    Off Shore..

  • Isle of Man Government
  • Jersey Legal Information Board provides Legislation and Unreported Judgments from 1997 onwards together with Practice Directions of the Royal Court, the consolidated Royal Court Rules and the Jersey Law Review.

    Other sites relating to Parliament and Politics generally

  • ePolitix.com is a free politics internet site which aims to improve communication between elected representatives and the public. It hosts the largest collection of MP websites on the internet, as well as providing up-to-date information on news and events around the UK. It also hosts the public affairs microsites of many companies, charities and other organisations. It is a particularly good politics and parliamentary news source, covering events at Westminster, the Scottish Parliament, European Parliament and the assemblies in Northern Ireland, Wales and London. There is a morning bulletin, covering what will be happening that day, a press review, describing press coverage of the day, and an agenda for the following day. There is also a section called Legislation Watch which tracks the progress of bills going through parliament. For each specific bill, there is commentary on the bill and its aims, information of where it has got to, highlights of relevant parliamentary debates, relevant news stories, and press releases from government and other interested bodies.

  • politics.co.uk is another interesting site covering political developments and providing background polticial information. It is designed to "appeal to politicians, researchers, journalists, political activists, students, and voters". That's just about everyone really. It includes information on M.P.s, Constituencies, Bills before Parliament, a guide to how the major political institutions work, a guide to Select Committees, news stories and briefings. As well as the Westminster Parliament it covers Scotland, Wales, London and Europe. It is run by DeHavilland Information Services plc and claims to be politically neutral.

  • Parliament Live provides live "webcasting" of Parliament. You can watch debates from the House of Commons, the House of Lords, Westminster Hall and Parliamentary Committees. You only get a smallish picture on the screen but that is perfecdtly adequate for a "talking head". The debates are genuinely live and you can only get them when a debate is actually taking place!

  • Parlianet is a new online subscription service from legal publisher Context. It is an index to the proceedings and publications of both Houses of Parliament in Westminster going back to 1979 together with other information sources used by both the House of Commons and the House of Lords. It also includes material from the Scottish Parliament, the National Assembly of Wales and the Northern Ireland Assembly. Whilst much of this information is also available from other sources (free) Parlianet gathers it together in a more user friendly manner and also provides additional searching and analysis options. There are also some useful summaries of the constitutional basis for the various parliaments - this part of the site is free although the Acts referred to, e.g. the Act of Union, 1707, are linked to documents in the Context service for which a subscription is required.

  • The Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) is the world organization of parliaments of sovereign States. It was established in 1889 and is based in Geneva. The Union is the focal point for world-wide parliamentary dialogue and works for the firm establishment of representative democracy. The site provides a useful reference point for Parliaments of all nations. Over a hundred national parliaments are currently members of the IPU.

  • BOPCRIS (British Official Publications Collaborative Reader Information Service) is based at the Ford Collection of British Official Publications, University of Southampton Library, in collaboration with the British Library and many other academic libraries across the UK. The site provides a full set of 18th, 19th and 20th Century British Official Publications consisting of approximately 250,000 Parliamentary Papers and an unknown number of non-parliamentary publications. The BOPCRIS partner collections have more or less complete holdings of Parliamentary Papers and extensive collections of non-parliamentary/ non-HMSO material. BOPCRIS will focus on around 23,000 key documents, originally selected for inclusion in the internationally known hard-copy Ford Select Lists and Breviates. As it says on the site "You can use this web site to search and browse information from British Official Publications over the period 1688-1995. You can also read abstracts, and view detailed consistent subject indexing, of key documents. You can then read the digitised full-text version of a limited number of these documents."


    Local Government

  • info4local.gov.uk is a portal for local authorities to find relevant information on the web sites of central government departments and agencies. It is run by a group of 6 departments including the Department of Education and Skills, Department of Health, Home Office, Department for Transport, Department for Work and Pensions and Office of the Deputy Prime Minister. It includes full reports from all government related bodies (many in pdf), new press releases, and extended links to related bodies. You can sign up for a free email alert to receive notification of the latest information from government departments and agencies relating to local government.
  • Local Government Lawyer is a free online publication for lawyers working for and advising local authorities. There are ongoing (up to date) news stories and analysis, with daily updated content from a team of experienced legal journalists as well as features from local government practitioners and leading private practice lawyers. The site covers topics including Adult Social Services, Children's Services, Community Safety, Employment, Governance and Risk, Housing, Licensing, Litigation, Planning, Procurement and Transport. Jobs, courses and events are also featured. Local Government Lawyer has recently launched Local Government Law TV which provides a wide selection of webinars and podcasts across the full range of local government legal practice. The courses are delivered by leading practitioners from private practice, the Bar and in-house. The site is accredited for CPD with the SRA and the BSB.
  • Local Government Chronicle's LGCNet has news, features, policy areas, discussions and links, as well as a special area for subscribing local authorities. There is a search engine which scans a news database containing over 70,000 stories going back to 1992.
  • Local Government Ombudsman investigate complaints of injustice arising from maladministration by local authorities and certain other bodies. The site has information about the processes involved and a register of decided cases by year (in pdf format).
  • Sweet & Maxwell's Localaw site is an online research facility for Local Government. It includes access to the Local Government Library of Encyclopedias as well as editorial input and comment by lawyers in the field. Although the main site is by subscription only, there is a 2 week free trial available and some sections of the site are on permanent free access (although you have to register even for these) including a Sweet & Maxwell Local Government Daily Update and an Eversheds Daily News Bulletin.
  • The Association of Council Secretaries and Solicitors provides information for members with articles, representations and opinions.
  • Oultwood Local Government Web Site Index is a wonderful database of Local Government in the UK, Ireland, Australia, Canada, New Zealand and South Africa. It is maintained by Charles Sale.


    Department of Consitutional Affairs (DCA)

    The Department of Constitutional Affairs (and which was previously the Lord Chancellor's Department) does not exist any longer although the original DCA site does still exist for archiving purposes here.

    The functions of the DCA have been taken over by Ministry of Justice.

    Marketing

  • Marketing Law is a site offered by Osborne Clarke, aimed at brand owners and suppliers of marketing services as well as lawyers. There is information on laws and regulations affecting this market sector. You have to register for parts of the site but all access is (at the moment) free.
  • The Privacy and Electronic Communications (EC directive) Regulations 2003 governs telphone marketing, email, SMS, MMS and any future types of electronic communication. This broadly requires consent from the recipient before unsolicited emails can be sent ("opt in" consent rather than "opt out" consent). Guidance can be found on the Information Commissioner's site.


    Military Sources

  • Aspals Legal Pages provide important links and background material for courts-martial advocates and those interested in military law and international law. There are links to current legislation, papers and reports on these topics.
  • The Pensions Appeal Tribunals hear appeals from ex-serviceman or women who have had their claims for a War Pension rejected by the Secretary of State for Social Services. The Tribunals' jurisdiction covers England & Wales (Scotland and Northern Ireland have their own Tribunals), and they are independent from the Veterans Agency. There is information on the tribunals and the processes on the site so far and decisions should be available on the site eventually.


    Ministry of Justice

    Latest on GOV.UK
  • GOV.UK is the Government's over-arching portal for (eventually) all Government services and information. This is designed to replace the hundreds of existing Government sites with a consistent interface, comprehensive search facilities and user-focused experience. The process of moving sites onto the new portal started in late 2012 and is designed to take the best part of two years. The "Services and information" list on the home page includes these (each of which have many more subdivisions and sub topics):
  • Driving and transport - Includes car tax, MOT and driving licences
  • Benefits- Includes tax credits, eligibility and appeals
  • Businesses and self-employed - Tools and guidance for businesses
  • Employing people - Includes pay, contracts and hiring
  • Passports, travel and living abroad - Includes renewing passports and travel advice by country
  • Education and learning - Includes student loans and admissions
  • Working, jobs and pensions - Includes holidays and finding a job
  • Housing and local services - Owning or renting and council services
  • Crime, justice and the law - Legal processes, courts and the police
  • Money and tax - Includes debt and Self Assessment
  • Births, deaths, marriages and care - Parenting, civil partnerships, divorce and Lasting Power of Attorney
  • Disabled people - Includes carers, your rights, benefits and the Equality Act
  • Citizenship and living in the UK - Voting, community participation, life in the UK, international projects.

    Under "Crime, justice and the law" (subtitled "legal processes, courts and the police") are the following sections:

  • Courts, sentencing and tribunals - Attending courts, paying fines, appealing a sentence and tribunals
  • Prisons and probation - Sentencing, probation and support for families of prisoners
  • Reporting crimes and getting compensation - Including criminal injuries compensation and reporting suspected crimes
  • Young people and the law - Includes legal rights, youth offending teams and crime prevention
  • Your rights and the law - Includes being arrested, cautions, discrimination and consumer rights

    However, most of the information required by lawyers is still on the previous Ministry of Justice site including:

  • Procedure rules
  • Daily court lists
  • Prison finder
  • Court fees
  • Employment Tribunal guidance
  • Claims management regulation
  • Forms, including Court forms,Tribunals, Criminal injuries compensation, Mental Capacity Act, asting Power of Attorney forms
  • Statistics relating to courts, crime, prisons,etc
    All this will presumably be moving over to the GOV.UK site although the timing is not clear.

    The Ministry of Justice is one of the largest government departments, with around 95,000 people (including probation services) and a budget of £9.2 billion. Every year around nine million people use their services in 900 locations across the United Kingdom, including 650 courts and tribunals and 139 prisons in England and Wales. Their work spans criminal, civil and family justice, democracy, rights and the constitution. The Ministry of Justice works to protect the public and reduce reoffending, and to provide a more effective, transparent and responsive criminal justice system for victims and the public. They also provide fair and simple routes to civil and family justice. The Ministry of Justice’s creation on 9 May 2007 brought together, for the first time, responsibility for the justice system – the courts, prisons and probation services. They work in partnership with the other government departments and agencies to reform the criminal justice system, to serve the public and support the victims of crime. They are also responsible for making new laws, strengthening democracy, modernising the constitution and safeguarding human rights.

    In particular, the Ministry of Justice covers the following areas:

  • The National Offender Management Service, i.e. prisons and probation, including the Youth Justice Board, the Parole Board, Inspectorates of Prison and Probation, Independent Monitoring Boards and the Prison and Probation Ombudsmen
  • Criminal, civil, family and administrative law: criminal law and sentencing policy, including Sentencing and the Law Commission
  • The Office for Criminal Justice Reform working with the Home Office and Attorney General's Office
  • Her Majesty's Courts Service: administration of the civil, family and criminal courts in England and Wales
  • The Tribunals Service: administration of tribunals across the UK
  • Legal Aid and the wider Community Legal Service through the Legal Services Commission
  • Support for the Judiciary: judicial appointments, the Judicial Office and Judicial Communications Office
  • The Privy Council Secretariat and Office of the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council
  • Constitutional affairs: electoral reform and democratic engagement, civil and human rights, freedom of information, management of the UK's constitutional arrangements and relationships including with the devolved administrations and the Crown Dependencies
  • Ministry of Justice corporate centre: focused corporate centre to shape overall strategy and drive performance and delivery.

    There is a detailed breakdown of all organisations (with an alphabetic listing) here.


    Partnership Law

  • Ralli Partnership Law are solicitors who can advice on the law which governs partnerships, a form of business entity which arises automatically when two or more people carry on a business together with a view to making a profit. The site provides information on many of the legal complexities in this area, including setting up a partnership, dealing with disputes within it and exiting a partnership.

  • Partnership Law is run by Michael Twomey, a consultant and lecturer in partnership law. He is the author of the definitive guide to Irish partnership law ("Partnership Law" published by Butterworths). The site provides regular updates on developments in the law of partnership in Ireland as well as relevant developments from other common law jurisdictions such as UK, Scotland, Australia, Canada and New Zealand (all these countries use basically the same Partnership Act 1890.) There is also a set of links to partnership law bodies worldwide.


    Pensions Law

  • Association of Pensions Lawyers publishes copies of the APL seminar talks which cover topical pensions law issues and include links to many useful sites.
  • Roderick Ramage provides articles and information on pensions particularly where a conflict of interest is involved, based on his long experience in employment and company law and corporate finance work. He does not seek permanent clients of his own but advises on a job by job basis either directly to trustees employers or scheme members or to solicitors needing specialised resources or unable to advise them because of a conflict of interest.
  • Sacker & Partners - London, provide information on pensions from a company point of view. There is a Pensions Survival Guide, information on the Regulation of Pensions Schemes and information on Incapacity. There is also a page of recent news.
  • Pension Surveys is a free site from Pendgragon, the specialist pensions information company, providing summary information on surveys and reports relating to pensions.
  • Pensions Appeal Tribunals hear appeals from ex-servicemen or women who have had their claims for a War Pension rejected by the Secretary of State for Defence. The jurisdiction of the Tribunals only includes England & Wales - Scotland and Northern Ireland have separate Tribunals. The Pensions Appeal Tribunals are independent of the Veterans Agency. The Tribunals have been set up in their present form since 1943, although they have been in existence as part of the Lord Chancellor's responsibility since the War Pensions Act 1919. Selected Decisions are due to go on the site during April 2005.
  • Incomes Data Services provide information and analysis on employment law, diversity, pay and reward, HR and pensions.
  • Dalriada Independent Trustees is an independent trustee firm, with offices throughout the UK, working with pension schemes of all sizes. Areas of expertise include PPF Assessment, FAS assessment, winding-up pension schemes, contract-based schemes, interim appointments, dispute resolution, investment committee services, and acting as a secretary to Trustees. There is extensive information on the site about appointing an independent trustee (why, who and how) as well as a blog with current topics relating to pensions and trustees.
  • Bradshaw Dixon Moore provides actuarially-based professional services to solicitors and other legal advisors relating to pensions and pension valuations. As well as paid products, there is a free calculator on the site to determine the typical value of total pension assets for an individual based on their age, current earnings and years in pensionable employment. There are a number of other downloads relating to how pensions are split in divorce.


    Personal Injury, including Medical Negligence

    After The Event Insurance for Clinical Negligence

    Note: most sources providing legislation, case law, or quantum data are only available from the legal publishers on a paying basis. See Legal Publishers Online for information on these. The sources listed here are mainly organisations concerned with Personal Injury and Accidents.

  • The Association of Personal Injury Lawyers is dedicated to improving the service provided to victims of accident and medical negligence. Over 4,800 solicitors and barristers work with the Association to fight for law reform to improve access to justice.
  • Legal + Medical website is the online companion to Legal and Medical - the magazine for Personal Injury Specialists. The magazine has a circulation of over 11,500 lawyers, claims managers and specialist medical examiners and addresses issues of interest and relevance to all three groups. Published every 2 months, the magazine is accompanied by a recently updated website with a lot of useful material, including current news stories on these topics, which is also available to non-subscribers of the magazine.
  • Pan-European Organisation of Personal Injury Lawyers was set up to improve communication between European jurisdictions in the field of personal injury law.
  • The Forum of Insurance Lawyers. To quote from its own description "FOIL is not a mouth-piece for the insurance industry: it is a mouthpiece for all lawyers, solicitors and legal executives, who act for insurance companies. Where there is a conflict of view between insurers and their legal professionals then it is FOIL's job to represent the interests of the lawyers concerned.
  • The Association of Child Abuse Lawyers provides practical support for Lawyers and other professionals working for adults & children who have been abused. The site provides a useful news section, with frequent updates, as well as a newsletter with longer articles and a central record of group actions against care homes.
  • The Motor Accident Solicitors Society (MASS) is an association of solicitors' firms with experience and expertise in the handling of motor accident claims. Member firms are located throughout the UK. The site provides a list of firms which are part of MASS and which can be searched by region.
  • Health & Safety Executive carries information on the HSE's current campaigns, past research, text of recent Inquiries and much other information on health and safety topics. It is also possible to view details of all prosecution cases taken by the HSE which have resulted in a conviction since April 1999 and similar details of all enforcement notices issued since April 2001, excluding those being appealed or withdrawn.
  • Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority provides online guides to the scheme and the application forms which can be downloaded. It links to CICA's Appeals Panel which has details of the appeals procedure, relevant forms and hearing date information.
  • Disease-i is a site provided by Weightmans (Birmingham, Leicester, Liverpool, London and Manchester) which provides practical handling guidance for disease claims and deals specifically with eight of the most prevalent occupational diseases in a medical, legal and historical context. The diseases covered in detail are Noise induced hearing loss claims, Hand arm vibration syndrome, Work related upper limb disorders, Asbestos related claims, Asthma, Stress and harassment claims, Dermatitis and Silicosis. The site is designed as an information point for claims handlers, risk and insurance managers and health & safety professionals to use in their day to day work. The aim is to reduce the inherent complexity of disease claims by offering practical claims handling tips and guidance on how to approach the most common issues such as causation, foreseeability, breach of duty, limitation, quantum and apportionment. The site will be updated on a quarterly basis and there is also an email update available for new information. Parts of the site are only available on subscription but there is a great deal of basic information available for free.
  • Patient provides evidence based information on a wide range of medical and health topics to patients and health professionals (in separate sections). It has been established for over 15 years and has won several awards along the lines of "Best Health website".
  • Hardwicke Civil provides a Personal Injury Newsletter on their site called Expresso News. This contains reviews of recent case law (around 20 cases each month) as well as articles on particular topics such as Psychiatric Injury and Damages for Congenial Employment.
  • 9 Gough Square also provides a newsletter on Personal Injury topics.
  • PI Brief Update is a free email newsletters coming from a group of mostly barristers which provides brief case reports, free of charge, to solicitors and other interested parties as well as the subscription-based PI Brief Update Law Journal (PIBULJ).
  • piCalculator is a free online tool designed to assist Personal Injury lawyers to prepare personal injury and clinical negligence claim documents. It consists of a number of pages that allow easy access to Ogden tables and Tax and NI information:
    * ageCALC - obtain an accurate (2DP) age at a particular date
    * interestCALC - calculate the interest due between two dates
    * upliftCALC - a Heil -v- Rankin calculator using RPI figures
    * discountCALC - time related discounts and multipliers
    * retirementCALC - discounts and multipliers to retirement
    * lifeCALC - life expectancy calculator
    * taxCALC - tax and national insurance deduction calculator
    This website was created by Mark Hewitt and Tom Gentry of Steel City Technology together with Mark’s sister, Rebecca Hewitt of Darbys LLP in Oxford. An interesting collaboration!
  • Exchange Chambers offers an online Personal Injury Newsletter, compiled by Bill Braithwaite QC. This includes an extensive set of summaries of cases tried and cases settled over the last 2 years.


    Politics and Political Parties

  • The Labour Party
  • Liberal Democrats
  • The Conservative Party
  • BBC News - UK Politics Page
  • The UK Politics Page
  • The Electoral Reform Society

  • ePolitix is a very interesting site following political developments in Parliament and the media. They have a section called Legislation Watch which covers all bills before Parliament including introductory material from government ministers or the Queen's speech and then listing each stage of the process through Parliament with appropriate links to material on the Parliamentary site. There is also information about MP's, current political news stories, constituencies and political journals. You can register for various tyes of email bulletin - one covering weekend press stories, one on future political events and one on committees and reports.


    Property, Planning, Land Registry, Housing, Conveyancing, E-Conveyancing

  • Land Registry guarantees the title to registered land in England and Wales and holds records for land ownership and interests. There are reports and services related to land and property generally.
  • The Lands Tribunal Website is designed to assist claimants and their representatives. It includes information on the functions and powers of the Lands Tribunal, an explanation of our rules and procedures and a searchable database of decisions. The Lands Tribunal was established by the Lands Tribunal Act 1949 to determine questions of disputed compensation arising out of the compulsory acquisition of land; to decide rating appeals; to exercise jurisdiction under section 84 of the Law of Property Act 1925 (discharge and modification of restrictive covenants); and to act as arbitrator under references by consent. Under the 1949 Act other jurisdictions may be added, and a number have been since the Tribunal came into existence on 1 January 1950. The Tribunal’s jurisdiction is exercised in England and Wales.
  • The Council of Mortgage Lenders is the trade association for the mortgage lending industry; their members account for around 98% of UK residential mortgage lending. The CML Lenders handbook is a useful resource for property lawyers.
  • Garden Court Chambers have created a bank of specialist legal resources relevant to their practice areas including Housing Legal Resources (take "Resources"). Within each of these legal areas, they have then set up around a dozen sub topics where they have located cases, relevant legislation and useful links. The areas they cover under Housing are Allocation of Housing, Anti-Social Behaviour, Community Care Housing, Disrepair, Homelessness, Housing Benefit, Housing and Human Rights, Landlord and Tenant, Possession and Unlawful Eviction & Harassment of Occupiers. They have recently extended their online resource to to include recent articles, updates and case law updates and indexes published by the journal Legal Action and written by their barristers.
  • Nicholas Nicol, Barrister & Mediator of 1 Pump Court, specialises in housing, property and public law and offers case briefings and articles in those areas. He covers the resources available relating to the security and condition of a house/home not owned by the resident, including landlord and tenant law, mortgages, the law relating to homeless people, housing allocation and housing conditions. He also provides a very well researched section on Housing resources generally.
  • Practical Conveyancing is a site presented by Legalease for property lawyers. It contains thousands of articles, case notes, practice points, and weblinks to other important material. The articles come from major law firms (such as Allen & Overy and Lovells) as well as journals like The Property Law Journal, The In-House Lawyer, and The Practical Lawyer. Much of the material is free although some is subscribers-only. The site can also be used as a modestly-priced source of CPD points.
  • Searchflow is an electronic conveyancing search service. They provide a one-stop shop for legal professionals in the residential and commercial markets who conduct property transactions and there is quite a lot of general informatin on the site.
  • Jordans offer property services to commercial property and residential property lawyers, licensed conveyancers, environmental practitioners and managing agents. The services include Personal Local Authority searches, Environments reports on commercial and residential property and Law Agency services. Jordans are now also one of the three licensed NLIS Channels.
  • Planning Law Blog comes from Martin H Goodall, a Solicitor who has specialised in planning law for more than 30 years. The blog provides Legal Commentary on issues affecting Town & Country Planning and particularly recent changes in planning legislation and judicial rulings in planning cases.
  • Today's Conveyancer is a free online newspaper for conveyancers with relevant news, resources and jobs. It is run by Chris Harris, previously Legal Serivices Director of Legal Marketing Services which is the largest panel manager of conveyancing services in the UK.
  • Historic Air Photos are now available with an online searching and identifying process. Arial photos from a number of independent aerial archives and survey companies have been brought together into one searchable web site. Visitors can use one web site to search through the records of multiple aerial survey companies and organisations who hold old aerial photos of the UK; more archives will be included in the future. There is a map based interface and the user, by indicating the search area, can check the records of all participating archives which cover that location and list them by date and scale and display the area covered on the map. Orders for prints or scans can also be placed online. (The photos are not themselves online but you can find out what is available online and then order the relevant photos.) These photos will be particularly useful for lawyers involved in legal and boundary disputes and all types of site investigation.
  • National Land Information Service (NLIS) connects users directly to land and property information held by local authorities, central government and other organisations that provide official sources of land and property data. All searches ordered through NLIS are classified as ‘official’ searches because they are sourced directly from and interpreted by the local authority and other official data providers and therefore, all statutory indemnities remain preserved and transferred to end customers. NLIS "Channels" are
  • There are however other suppliers of property searches who are not part of the NLIS system, such as:
  • Several software developers have been accredited by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) to submit Land Transaction Returns via the Internet. (The first two were EasyConvey and SDLT.co.uk.) The process uses the Government's "gateway" process (requiring registration) and also uses encryption to send the forms. This is all part of the Government's push towards e-conveyancing. Easyconvey is a company which already provides software for many aspects of e-conveyancing, including case management and the ability for a client to track matters on line.
  • The Property Standardisation Group ("PSG") is made up of representatives from a number of prominent Scottish firms, including McGrigor Donald, Dundas & Wilson, Maclay Murray & Spens and Shepherd+ Wedderburn. The Group also has various consultees in firms like DLA, Semple Fraser and Brodies. The aim of the group is to standardise documents and procedures which Scottish lawyers use on a day to day basis which basically do the same thing but which are often produced in different forms since the detailed styles have been developed separately in each firm. The Group has so far produced a suite of Letters of Obligation, a due diligence questionnaire and a completion checklist and all of these can be downloaded from the site. They are currently in the process of agreeing the form of a suite of management documentation eg guarantees, letters of consent, assignations.
  • Landlord-Law, the innovative site set up by sole practitioner Tessa Shepperson, has a Law Reform section where you can find government consultation and other papers on Housing Law Reform. Tessa also provides online answer-forms to enable the general public to respond to these consultations easily. Summaries of past consultation exercises via her site can also be found in this section.
  • Hardwicke Real Estate and Development Group provide a monthly newsletter with news, developments, articles and cases.
  • Falcon Chambers work principally in the litigation of the many aspects of real property and property-related law, and also in advisory and drafting work in the same fields. A number of free articles are available on the site on property topics.
  • New Square Chambers provide articles and publications on property, trusts and estates and chancery.
  • EGi's Legal Service (Property Law) is an on-line research and news resource. It is now part of Estates Gazette.
  • PLC Property Law is a subscription service for commercial property lawyers from Practical Law Company. Subscribers receive practical updates explaining the implications of new developments as they occur. The service also provides access to a maintained know-how bank comprising practice notes, precedents and forms. The updates are integrated with the know-how bank and useful external resources. There is a free two week trial available of the service. You can sign up on the site.
  • Hurford Salvi Carr is a firm of property advisors and development consultants who publish a series of London Residential Research Reports. These provide an in depth analysis into market trends, sub-market activity and the planning pipeline of the residential market in London.
  • Property Litigation Association exists to promote specialist property litigation skills within the property industry, to provide a network for the exchange of information among members, to promote and encourage education and training in property litigation and to develop a public voice of property litigation with a media profile and a lobbying capacity. The association provides conferences and workshops and works closely with a number of organisations to improve the law.
  • nearlylegal "housing law news and comment" is a blog by a group of barristers and solicitors experienced in housing and landlord & tenant law. The site provides updates, case reports and comment on housing law and related matters.The archives contain case reports on pretty much every relevant High Court, Court of Appeal and House of Lords case since 2007, as well as some County Court and Lands Tribunal judgments. They also have updates on statute, links to other resources and a page of housing news feeds from other sites.
  • BDN Blog is written by Angus Walker of Bircham Dyson Bell. The blog is actually about planning Law and in particular, about the implementation of the Planning Act 2008, which introduces a new regime for the authorisation of large infrastructure such as airport runways, nuclear power stations, windfarms, reservoirs and incinerators. It is principally aimed at non-lawyers - whether potential clients or fellow consultants - although lawyers will also find it useful.
  • The Property Law Website is run by barrister and mediator Gary Webber. This is an online property law updating service. Updates are available on the site most months, together with appropriate links to cases, statutes, statutory instruments and other documents (when available free on the internet). It is also possible to download the monthly updates in pdf or word format. Material from the monthly updates is also put into "The Property Law Library" section of the site, which also contains articles and other information relevant to property law. There is a section covering courses available which relate to property law, an extensive description of the web resources on the topic and a list of mediators available to deal with property law disputes. Some parts of the site are free but full access is only available to members who subscribe, currently £50 plus VAT, with group rates offered.
  • planning-applications.co.uk is a free comprehensive guide to all aspects of the UK Town Planning System, prepared by Ian P.Butter BSc FRICS a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors with over 20 years professional experience in the field of planning. There are guides to submitting planning applications, planning appeals, planning enforcement, permitted development, a database of local authority sites, links to useful sources of information and specific professional advice, as well as national Development Plan monitoring. The site also runs an email based enquiry service, with simple queries answered for free.
  • Philippsohn Crawfords Berwald - London, provide a series of comments and briefings on forthcoming and existing legislation relating to property (particularly commercial property) as well as developments in the courts.
  • Shelter, the housing and homelessness charity, provide information on housing and campaign for better housing.
  • Leasehold Advisory Service is an independent advice agency, funded partly by Government grant and partly by the private sector, providing free advice to leaseholders, landlords, professional advisers and others on the law affecting residential leasehold property.
  • Council for Licensed Conveyancers has a site describing the rules for licensed conveyancers and the body whose job it is to regulate them.


    Public Law

  • The Public Law Project, which is based at Birkbeck College, University of London, has launched a new website. PLP was founded 10 years ago to promote access to public law remedies, especially for those disadvantaged by poverty, disability or the like. They have worked to develop judicial review in new fields, such as community care and health services law, and have brought a number of important public interest test cases. The site provides details of casework, policy and research, training and publications.

  • Jordans Public Law Information Portal is a free current awareness site for practitioners dealing with judicial review and public law issues. There are case summaries, opinion and news pieces, and a legislation tracker. (More information is available if you take out a subscription).

  • Judicial Review is one of the topics covered by London and Bristol-based solicitors Deighton Pierce Glynn who specialise in public law, discrimination law and human rights. They work with campaign groups and advice agencies, as well as individuals, particularly relating to judicial reviews.

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