Small charities and social enterprises will be able to access £1m of free legal resources through an online service, law firm Bates Wells Braithwaite announced today.
The support, through its online tool, Get Legal, is available in partnership with infrastructure bodies NCVO and Social Enterprise UK.
Some 15,000 individuals and organisations will be able to use vouchers to download bespoke legal documents.
Thea Longley, a partner at BWB and member of its charity and social enterprise team, said the move was driven by a need to help charities facing increasing pressure to keep administration costs low.
“We know that many small charities cannot afford to take any legal advice at all,” she said. “Our message to charities and social enterprises is that Get Legal is part of our commitment to the sector and has been designed to help you access more straightforward legal documents at a much lower cost.
"We encourage organisations to embrace this new, digital tool to ensure you’re up to date with duties and regulatory requirements on a range of issues from employment to governance and beyond.”
Documents on the site will also be made available for charities to purchase at a price of one-tenth of the cost of commissioning a solicitor to draft, according to BWB.
The document-tailoring process is supplemented by detailed guidance and notes from BWB solicitors and will be kept up to date through regular reviews.
Gillen Knight, head of enterprise and membership at NCVO, said: “We know from our members that many of them would feel more confident with the opportunity to check that their legal procedures are robust and up to date. We are really pleased to be able to provide access to Get Legal content, drafted by charity law experts at BWB.”