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No longer just the preserve of the super-rich benefactor charities now play an indispensable role in modern life. They deliver services which were formerly the responsibility of national and local government to a huge range of beneficiaries, and help to fill in the cracks that appear when state funding dries up.

McCormicks works closely with many leading charitable organisations to maximise the impact they make and the value of their assets. The practice’s capabilities and impressive client base in this specialist area has won the firm a substantial reputation in this particular area of law.

A huge range of activities are potentially charitable in nature, and organisations can benefit from the privileges that charitable status can bring. McCormicks advise on constitutional matters including regulatory compliance, opportunities for fundraising, tax issues including achieving tax efficiency and the appointment and role of trustees.


McCormicks provides a complete service to the charity sector through drawing on expertise across the entire practice. McCormicks advise a variety of charity clients including religious orders, sports organisations and local and national fund raising charities, not only on charity law but also in a number of other areas including commercial property, employment, sport, and regulatory.

McCormicks is a member of the Charity Law Association and has acted or acts for the following clients:

  • The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award
  • The Prince’s Trust
  • The Outward Bound Trust
  • NCH
  • The Liverpool Roman Catholic Archdiocese
  • War Memorials Trust
  • The British Thyroid Foundation
  • The Order of the Holy Paraclete
  • The Animal Health Trust
  • Ashville College Harrogate
  • Friends of the MPS Society
  • The Football Foundation
  • The Helen Feather Memorial Trust
  • Harrogate International Festivals

Peter McCormick – ‘He always knows exactly what he’s doing, and he’s one of the best we’ve worked with.” Chambers UK

Providing ‘a good service and appropriate guidance and advice.” UK Legal 500

Sources say ‘They are so helpful and explain matters in clear layman’s terms.' Peter McCormick has an ‘impressively commercial overview of the sector.” Chambers UK

McCormicks has an 'exceptional' team.” UK Legal 500

The ‘first class’, ‘astute, commercial and efficient’ team at McCormicks provides a full range of services to charities and not-for-profit organisations nationally. Department Head, Peter McCormick, is ‘excellent’ and ‘provides wonderful support.” UK Legal 500

This Harrogate-based firm advises clients on the full spectrum of charities law, including tax, brand management, property, employment and the establishment of new charities. Clients say: ‘They respond quickly and always explain things in an easy-to-understand language.” Chambers UK

Clients are fulsome in their praise and appreciate that the firm understands the sector and takes the time to understand its clients: ‘They are always quick to respond to all forms of communication and give good and sound advice on all matters.” Chambers UK

At McCormicks, property specialist Heather Roberts and head of private client Elaine Lightfoot advise on the development of revenue streams, shooting agreements and leases, succession planning and other property-related issues. Peter McCormick leads the team.” - Legal 500

McCormicks has a growing charities practice, and acts for clients such as The Football Foundation and Visit Harrogate. Peter McCormick heads the team.” - Legal 500

Peter McCormick heads a multi-disciplinary team at McCormicks, and gives ‘invaluable advice’. Clients include Harrogate International Festivals.” - Legal 500

"McCormicks' close association with the sector is underscored by Peter McCormick's advice to Visit Harrogate on securing Le Grand Depart of the Tour de France for the region. The firm also acts for the Premier League Charitable Fund." - Legal 500

“In keeping with the firm’s outstanding reputation in the sports field, McCormicks acts for a number of sporting charities; managing partner Peter McCormick is a trustee of the Football Foundation, the country’s largest sporting charity. In addition to its market-leading reputation in the sports field, the firm acts for charities in a variety of other fields, with longstanding clients including Harrogate International Festivals, which the firm recently advised on a range of employment matters as well as on the drafting of a sponsorship agreement for a literary festival. The firm also acts for the War Memorials Trust, which it is assisting with the redrafting of the client’s governing document in line with an expansion of work into Scotland. Other key figures include private client head Elaine Lightfoot and Heather Roberts, whose clients include the John Strutt Memorial Fund.” - Legal 500

“McCormicks' charity and not-for-profit team offers the full range of services to clients, advising on matters relating to asset transfers, property issues, sponsorship agreements, procurement and commercial litigation. Practice head Peter McCormick continues to act as a trustee for many charities, including the Football Foundation, which receives millions of pounds of funding from the Premier League, the Football Association and the Government to deliver community projects at grassroots level.” - Legal 500

“McCormicks is ‘an excellent firm that punches well above its weight’ and its agriculture and estates team attracts praise for being ‘pleasant to deal with and willing to consider fee structures to suit its clients’ needs’. Peter McCormick heads the practice and is singled out for his charity expertise; he regularly acts on agricultural law matters for charities including the Royal Horticultural Society, which recently instructed the firm on its acquisition of land and buildings for the development of its northern garden.” - Legal 500