Running a successful, expanding football club can become a complicated affair as the number of teams increases and so does the complexity involved in administering them. With the number of FA Charter Standard Community Clubs increasing to over 550 and averaging 21 teams, many voluntary clubs are becoming like small businesses to operate.
One such area of support requested by clubs was the need for legal advice on a multitude of different areas. These areas commonly include:-
Constitutional & Organisational Structure
Many large clubs are now investigating the various legal structures available together with their advantages and disadvantages. The main reasons clubs investigate this area of law is to reduce the personal liabilities of volunteers and provide the club with its own legal entity.
Landlord & Tennant
Another increasing relevant area of legal advice required is on ground leases, tenancy agreements, hiring of facilities, community asset transfers and public and occupier’s liabilities. In addition, clubs require advice on the purchase and sale of freehold properties, securing finance against property assets and ground relocations and redevelopments.
Building & Planning
Clubs looking to expand their facilities require support in planning related services including the submission of planning applications, the rights of appeal against planning decisions, negotiating and removing conditions attached to planning decision notices and providing advice on Highway Agency powers.
Finally, some clubs who employ people as coaches, bar staff, groundsmen, etc are requiring advice on employment law ranging from recruitment to dismissal.
Free Legal Helpline
To support clubs in the legal areas highlighted above and many more The FA has joined forces with Muckle LLP to provide free legal support to FA Charter Standard Clubs and Leagues. Any FA Charter Standard clubs or leagues can receive up to 30 minutes free advice on any one subject by contacting: 0191 2117799 or CSLegalhelp@TheFA.com
Legal Helpline Flyer
FA Club Structures Guide
Tadcaster Albion FC Case Study