Simon Steeden

Simon Steeden picture

Simon Steeden is a partner in the Charity and Social Enterprise team is joint head of BWB's Electoral, Political and Campaigning group. Simon advises a wide range of household name campaigning organisations on electoral law compliance, including advice on third party campaigning, coalition campaigning and constituency-level campaigning. He also has substantial experience in advising charities on their compliance with charity law requirements in relation to campaigning and political activity. Simon is a non-executive director of Friends of the Earth, England & Wales and was actively involved in the sector’s recent campaign against the Lobbying Act.

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Melanie Carter

Melanie is the head of Public & Regulatory law at BWB and is joint head of BWB's Electoral, Political and Campaigning group. She has been involved with the campaign against the Lobbying Act from the outset and has advised various clients on its effect. Most recently, she advised on the possibilities of judicial review of the Electoral Commission Guidance. Her electoral practice has also recently involved the drafting of the Recall of MPs Bill for 38 Degrees, a bill which aims to put the power of recall into the hands of constituents, rather than a select committee of MPs. Previously she has advised on purdah policies for public authorities and the public law implications of taking decisions during this ultra sensitive period. She is retained by the compliance officer for the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority and was formerly a tribunal judge for the Adjudication Panel for England, which oversaw standards of conduct of locally elected councillors. Her broader public law practice includes representing a variety of campaigning clients, including the Ramblers. She has a particular interest in the way in which public law can be used by the third sector to achieve its aims.

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Rupert Earle

Rupert photo Rupert is a partner with over 20 years of experience in media, public/regulatory and advertising law. Rupert has advised the media and politicians (including MPs) of all parties and none on political stories for many years, and has defended defamation actions brought by former Conservative Party treasurers Lord Ashcroft and Peter Cruddas. He acted for journalist Jon Ungoed-Thomas in the 2009 freedom of information case which exposed the MPs expenses scandal. He also advises on advertising regulation, including what constitutes political advertising (clients include the Advertising Standards Authority), on data privacy issues, and on public law challenges to political decisions (eg challenge to Transport for London’s ban on advertising for North Cyprus).

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Rosamund McCarthy

Rosamund is a partner in the Charity and Social Enterprise team. Rosamund advises a wide range of charities, foundations and public benefit organisations (national and international) on establishment, campaigning, governance, philanthropy, fundraising and enterprise activities. She has a particular interest in the campaigning and political activities of not-for-profits and has advised numerous charities and campaigning groups on their legal obligations. During the 2010 general election she advised the Ask the Climate Change Coalition, made up of leading campaigning organisations, as well as many household name charities. Rosamund has particular expertise in advising on group or dual structures which include charities, political organisations and trading entities.

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Lawrence Simanowitz

Lawrie's photo Lawrence has 14 years of specialist experience in advising on charity law and has also spent several years working as a parliamentary assistant to a backbench MP, and then as a broadcast journalist and documentary-maker. He has broad experience of advising and training charitable companies, charter bodies, trusts, associations, and public benefit clients throughout their life cycle. His clients range from campaigning organisations to major national institutions and international networks. He is chair of 38 degrees charitable trust and a board member of The Elders – a charity founded by Nelson Mandela to address intractable issues of conflict, internationally.

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Alex de Jongh
Senior Associate

Alex photo Alex handles a wide range of contentious matters. He has extensive experience of High Court litigation, including specialist lists (Commercial Court, Technology and Construction Court and Companies Court), and of alternative methods of dispute resolution, including mediation. Alex specialises in defamation, with with particular emphasis on pre-publication advice to charities and campaigning organisations.

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Mairead O'Reilly
Senior Associate

Mairead photo Mairead has experience in data protection (including advising on subject access requests, data sharing, cross-border data transfers, data protection audits, data security, and data protection statements); e-marketing and fundraising; IT software and hardware agreements; website design and development agreements; website issues including social networking and interactive content, privacy policies and website terms and conditions; commercial contacts; charity formations, corporate restructuring and mergers; advice to trustees on regulatory and governance matters; fundraising agreements; and lotteries, competitions and free draws.

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Tom McNeil

Tom is an associate in the Charity and Social Enterprise team. His experience includes advising charities and NGOs on their political campaigns, including regulation under electoral, referendum and charity law. He also advises trade unions and students’ unions in relation to campaigns and legal issues more generally. Tom also has significant political involvement outside of work: he stood as a parliamentary candidate in the 2015 general election; provides policy advice to political advisors and politicians; and engages with human rights campaigning.

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