Russell Jones & Walker (RJW) is to open a new parliamentary and legal affairs department, to be headed by the firm’s current head of the trade union services group Fraser Whitehead.
The move comes as RJW continues to reposition itself for the post-Clementi era and as part of its strategy to add value to the services it provides clients.
The new practice area will have several arms, including an education service to teach clients of changes in the law, which will be done through innovations such as podcasts.
Class actions will also be an option for the department if the EU gives it the go-ahead. The main thrust of the practice, however, will be to offer a ‘lobbying’ service, where lawyers will give advice to clients that are campaigning to change the law.
Louise Restell, RJW head of public affairs, who was brought in to oversee the firm’s repositioning and who will be part of the new team along with partner Whitehead, said: “Much lobbying is about changing legislation, so who better to advise and come up with the solutions than lawyers?”Once the Clementi effect has taken place, firms will need to be able to distinguish themselves and we see this department as adding value and putting us ahead of the rest.”