Nabarros has been invited to enter into a partnership with the council to share information and experience, including specialist legal expertise, training and IT.
The firm also gains preferred supplier status as part of the deal, which means the council will use its services provided it can demonstrate quality and cost-effectiveness.
Nabarros will work alongside the council on major projects, such as the outsourcing of learning services and PFI projects.
Rodney Bass, Essex County Council's cabinet member for finance and resources, said: “This is a very important step for us and will enhance our ability to work closely with partners such as district councils and health organisations.
“As well as pooling our expertise, the move will open up the way for free staff training and secondment.”
The council will share some of these benefits with Essex District Council and Essex Borough Council, with which it already has a joint advocacy service to pool legal advice and support.
Nabarros public sector group head Malcolm Iley said: “I believe this will be an exciting strategic partnership with the lawyers from Essex County Council, and we were delighted to be chosen after the procurement process.
“It underpins our continuing commitment to the public sector, and to be chosen by such a prestigious local authority to enter into a relationship with their in-house legal department is very exciting.”
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