Planning Lawyer

£42,000 - £52,000
21 Mar 2023
11 Apr 2023
Job Title
Practice Area
Property and Planning
PQE Level
2-4, 5-7
Contract Type
Full Time

Planning Lawyer

Hertfordshire (Hybrid)

Full time, permanent

£42,000 - £52,000

ACS Recruitment are delighted to be partnering with a Local Authority, seeking a Planning Lawyer on a full time, permanent basis.

This is an excellent opportunity to showcase your accomplished Planning skills, to join a team of excellent Lawyers – supporting on a variety of different matters,

The role:

  • To provide timely and effective specialist legal advice to the Council’s Planning Department, elected Members, including at committees, and officers across the council on all matters related to Town and Country Planning and associated legislation;
  • To give advice to the Council’s Planning Department, the Council and members on all matters related to Town and Country Planning and associated legislation
  • To be responsible for providing innovative solutions to deal with complex issues arising in connection with the work within the team and the legal issues presented by officers;
  • To manage a varied caseload of complex and substantial legal work including, but not limited to, planning disputes, section 106 agreements, providing advice and support on planning law issues, drafting agreements, article 4 directions, public inquiries, the local plan and dealing with all matters ancillary thereto. Also drafting instructions to Counsel and reports;
  • To negotiate, draft and deal with agreements under s.106 Town and Country Planning Act 1990 and any other related agreements;
  • To deal with all matters involving planning enforcement covered by planning legislation and all related legislation including, but not limited to, enforcement notices, stop notices and notices under s.215 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990;
  • To advise in respect of Listed Buildings and conversation matters
  • Keep officers and members informed of new legislation and case law relevant to their operations, including training seminars where appropriate and to ensure that they maintain a sound application of legal requirements;
  • Contribute to preparation of committee reports and attendance at Council and committee meetings from time to time as directed and required;
  • Attend, advise and provide legal services to council Committees and Panels as required, particularly Development Management Committee meetings;
  • To provide pragmatic advice across a range of local government work, providing appropriate solutions that are legally and constitutionally compliant;
  • To provide accurate advice and guidance to team members, client officers and Members in all planning law matters and other general matters
  • To undertake research and provide advice to the Council in the areas of planning law specifically and local government law generally
  • Participate in working and project groups, in respect of relevant specialisms or so as to represent the department effectively;
  • To periodically review all standard documents within the areas of responsibility to ensure that they are up to date and identify appropriate improvements in processes and procedures relevant to the section.
  • Responsible for ensuring that the Council’s Officers and Members are kept appraised of changes in the law in the areas of responsibility.
  • To undertake any other reasonable duty within the overall job objective as required


  • Deputise for the Legal Services Manager in the effective management of the service as directed from time to time;
  • In the absence of the Head of Legal and Democratic Services, to deputise for them as legal advisor to meetings of the Council and Executive;
  • To undertake duties on behalf of the Monitoring Officer pertaining to governance and code of conduct matters as required;
  • To act as the Council’s lead advocate at Public Inquiries before the Planning Inspectorate, where appropriate;
  • Advocacy in contested cases in the Magistrates or County Court pertaining to planning enforcement;
  • Drafting complex legal documents including, but not limited to, complex section 106 agreements, injunctions;

Political Restriction

This post is subject to political restriction, which is divided into two categories and relates to the post holder duties, thus;

  • Specified posts, including ‘deputy chief officers’  - since the post holder would be required to deputise for the Corporate Legal Manager at relevant committee and sub-committee meetings to make formal reports, and provide additional policy advice, this constitutes a specified post within this criteria.
  • ‘Sensitive’ posts, which meet one of both of the following duties related criteria,
  • Giving advice on a regular basis to the authority itself, to any committee or sub-committee of the authority of any joint committee on which the authority are represented, or where the authority are operating executive arrangments, to the executive of the authority; to any committee of that executive, or to any member of that executive who is a member of the authority
  • Speaking on behalf of the authority on a regular basis to journalists or broadcasters.
  • The postholder is therefore prevented from having any active political role either in or outside the workplace. The postholder is automatically disqualified from standing for or holding elected office e.g. as a Local Councillor or MP (excluding standing for or holding elected office as a Parish or Town Councillor, as Parish/Town Councils are Local Authorities, but not principal authorities, and are therefore not covered). The postholder is also restricted from canvassing on behalf of a political party or candidate or speaking to the public at large or publishing any written or artistic work that appears to support a political party. It does not debar political party membership, just active participation and endorsement.               
  • The postholder must therefore be aware that in accepting this post, they are required to confirm that they will conform with these political restrictions and that they will be included as conditions of their formal contract of employment with the authority