Third Sector Awards 2016: Best Charity Law Firm - Winner: Hogan Lovells International LLP for the Saving Lives in London project

Awarded to a legal firm that has provided outstanding support to its voluntary sector clients or the broader charity sector

Hogan Lovells International LLP supported London's Air Ambulance
Hogan Lovells International LLP supported London's Air Ambulance

What was the project?

Hogan Lovells set out to help the London Air Ambulance purchase a second helicopter.

The LAA’s existing helicopter was not operational for 60 days last year, and the charity estimated that a second one would allow the charity to reach an extra 400 critically injured people each year.

The project was part of a three-year partnership between the charity and the company that began in 2014.

Hogan Lovells staff voted to support the LAA, with which the firm has a relationship that dates back to the 2005 London bombings. At the time the firm was brought in to help victims and their families claim state compensation, and staff were impressed by the charity’s work.

What did the charity do?

Hogan Lovells’ aircraft finance practice carried out the legal work involved in purchasing the helicopter on an entirely pro bono basis, part of the 30,100 hours of pro bono legal advice the London office has provided to charities and social enterprises. The team was also involved in the worldwide hunt for a second-hand helicopter. Their efforts were supported by a fundraising and awareness campaign by the firm.

What did the project achieve?

A second-hand helicopter was located in Qatar. The firm oversaw the complex purchase negotiations and advised on loans and financing to help pay for it.

Staff raised more than £150,000 through a large number of events, including quiz nights, wine tastings, ballroom dancing competitions and sponsored runs, walks and abseils.

What did the judges say?

Caitlin Dean, chair of the charity Pregnancy Sickness Support, said: "This is a great example of a law firm not just providing some pro-bono work for a charity, but also integrating the charity into the very heart of the company."


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