Legal Guidance

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Legal Guidance

What it does:
This guidance provides help and information for charities and voluntary sector and community organisations about the law on buildings and land.

Who it is for:
This guidance will be especially helpful to busy managers of community buildings who understand the importance of making informed decisions about matters to do with their premises. It will also be useful for trustees and member of management committees and for all in the sector who want to check or improve their understanding of the law in this vital area.

How to use this guidance:
The guidance is arranged in four sections, each of which covers a major stage in the taking on, running or disposing of property:

These four sections identify the key points and issues you need to be aware of when engaged in that particular activity (e.g. acquiring premises, disposing of premises, etc.)
These concise points then enable you to go to another page with more detailed information about that particular issue.  There are also links to other pages in this guidance which we hope will be helpful.

We hope you find this information useful, and welcome feedback.  Please contact Janet Keighley at Building Assets if you have any comments or questions

Copyright in the guidance pages

This guidance has been developed by James McCallum at Russell Cooke Solicitors for Building Assets.  All content of the guidance is Copyright © James McCallum 2015.

Russell Cooke , is a multi-service law firm with a dedicated Charity and Social Business Team .  Please contact Clare Garbett on if you require any further information.

Building Assets is a social enterprise proving premises related services to community and voluntary sector and third sector organisations.  Please see the rest of this website for further information, and contact Building Assets manager, Janet Keighley if you wish to discuss any matters on the website,

The status of the guidance

The purpose of the guidance pages and the suggested links within them is to provide an indication of the relevant areas of law for managers of community buildings.  It is not possible to provide a full statement of the law and none of the content should be treated as legal advice.  Where serious problems arise it may be appropriate to consult professional advisors.  Please note that at present information on the website regarding public laws (including criminal liability) is very limited.  Useful further detailed information in this area and on other legal issues that are dealt with in the guidance can be obtained from the webpages which include pages from the Charity Commission, the Land Registry, HMRC, the Health and Safety Executive and many others.


A really valuable source of guidance to the law on buildings and land for managers of community buildings, trustees and management committees who want to make informed decisions about their premises.

“They helped us to get really good legal advisors who had relevant experience with organisations like us.”

Minority ethnic women’s organisation.


“We would not have known we needed some of the advice we got but, because we got it, it saved money on lawyers that they helped us to get and who were very experienced on the issues we needed to deal with.”

Sports Club undertaking asset transfer



*Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at