Manufacturing

Our manufacturing lawyers offer expert legal advice to advanced manufacturing and engineering businesses of all shapes and sizes across the UK, advising on operational, financial and regulatory issues that affect the running and success of your business.

Our full service law firm is based in the very heart of the Midlands and have strong links and an unparalleled reputation in the area.

According to research shared by the Coventry & Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership, the wider advanced manufacturing and engineering sector has a particularly strong footprint with over 400 businesses in Coventry and Warwickshire, employing some 15,000 people. Annual investment is over £100m.

Coventry & Warwickshire is home to some of the most well known names in the sector including:

  • Rolls-Royce, Aston Martin, Jaguar Land Rover, Meggitt, Aga Rangemaster, Clamonta, Arrowsmith Engineering, JJ Churchill and Powerkut
  • BMW, Peugeot Citroen, 3M, Alstom, Terex, AGCO, Tata Motors, Geely and Volvo
  • UK supply chain companies including Brose, Bosch, Ricardo, MIRA, Unipart, Lear and Delphi Lockheed

Our manufacturing and engineering solicitors understand the sector inside and out. They know the pressures you face in the manufacturing and engineering sector including increased regulations, tighter margins on materials, supply chain, logistics, outsourcing, product liability, brand and product protection and funding. Our team will work with you to ensure that your business runs smoothly and you are well placed for any hurdles you may encounter - whether negotiating contracts or corporate matters, dealing with disputes, protecting your IP, helping with your real estate or sourcing the right staff locally or internationally.

Our engineering and manufacturing lawyers work across the firm with colleagues with other legal specialists giving you access to a wide spectrum of legal expertise and manufacturing law knowledge. We are able to provide practical manufacturing legal advice that is specifically tailored to you and your business.

We also work with accountants, banks and other professional intermediaries with strengths in manufacturing and engineering to ensure that we can provide whole business solutions to you.

Our automotive expertise

We advise a broad range of clients within the automotive sector including: vehicle manufacturers (VMs), Tier 1/2/3 suppliers, the independent aftermarket (IAM), automotive finance houses, dealerships, automotive consultants and motorsport associations.

Our competitive rates combined with our automotive expertise (derived from our location in the heartland of the UK automotive sector), supports automotive businesses in addressing the challenges they face including increasing competition, streamlining costs and a growing sustainability agenda.

How we can help you?

Corporate transactions

Our corporate lawyers work with a range of manufacturing and engineering businesses from new ventures and start-ups through to multinational corporations.

Our corporate solicitors can also offer strategic advice for any stage of the corporate lifecycle from routine company law through to regulatory advice for the manufacturing and engineering sector.

Our corporate team can advise on mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, collaboration agreements, funding and investments, private equity funding, shareholder agreements and restructuring.

Intellectual property

We have a specialist team of intellectual property solicitors who can advise manufacturing and engineering businesses on the best way to manage, protect and exploit the intellectual property they have created with their brand, designs and products. This can be by registering trademarks or patents and monitoring for infringements of copyrighted materials.

If the intellectual property rights created are infringed our lawyers can enforce them through commercial negotiation and agreement and, where appropriate, court proceedings.

Employment law

Our employment law solicitors work with employers across a range of businesses in the engineering and manufacturing sector advising on all types of employment law matters.

Our employment team work with expert colleagues across the business who specialise in employment tax, benefits and incentives, EMI options, HR management and information governance to provide employers with a comprehensive employment-related service, whatever the size of your workforce.

Our team can advise on all human resources related matters including employment contracts, policies and handbooks, settlement agreements, employment tribunals, redundancy and restructurings, TUPE transfers

Health and safety

Our team can provide expert advice on all regulatory matters involving health and safety, including your responsibilities to make sure that your team are working safely within your corporate guidelines and the legal regulations.

We can advise on the steps that must be adhered to in order to ensure the safety of all those working within your team. As a minimum it is your legal responsibility to ensure everyone is competent and has the necessary resources to carry out work safely.

Outsourcing

Our outsourcing lawyers have experience advising businesses in the manufacturing and engineering sector on the sometimes complex area of outsourcing and technology law.

Outsourcing projects, by their very nature, can be lengthy and become very complex; it is not uncommon for various different issues to arise, regardless of whether the project involves business services, logistics, software, hardware or related services.

In our team we have experienced outsourcing solicitors who can assist in outsourcing projects across an array of areas including IT, technology, facilities and business services.  We can help with managing supply chain risk including advising on commercial contracts, standard and bespoke terms and conditions, contract reviews and dealing with insolvency in the supply chain.

Data protection

If you handle personal information about individuals, you have a number of legal obligations to protect that information under the Data Protection Act 1998. Our data protection solicitors offer guidance to any business on their obligations and all aspects of data protection compliance and information governance.

Our cases

Fahstone

We advised a specialist joinery company regarding a large CNC machine and production line for the bespoke manufacturer of high quality windows and doors.  This involved working closely with mechanical engineering consultants and specialists regarding bespoke specialist hardware and computer software.

Major Global Motor Manufacturer

We advised a major car manufacturer on the contracts via new body treatment production line including advice on the use of the NEC 3 contract as a professional services contract and drafting the contract terms and providing amendments specific to the projects.  We have also advised on the flag ships shown for the same manufacturer.

Butcher's Pet Care

We advised a major food producer on problems experienced with a microbiological effluence treatment plant.  The plant catastrophically failed and was rebuilt but again failed performance tests.  We then took action against the contractor who built the plant and the developer of the site and its guarantor.  We also proceeded under a warranty claim which resulted in substantial commercial settlement by mediation.  In addition we gave advice relating the procurement's of new plants, recommending use of the IChemE Red Book.  We were required to understand and present a variety of technical arguments concerning the mechanism of the part that it is testing and the related chemistry and microbiology involved.

Brinklow Biogas

We advised the land owners on the contracts to procure the design, construction, installation, commissioning, testing and maintenance of an anaerobic digestion plant which will then split the gas partly for resale onto the grid and partly for use to generate heat and power for the farm and quarry operations owned by the same employer.  This contract was written under an ICheme Red Book which required detailed analysis of such issues as liability periods, testing regimes, programming issues, off-site materials payment risk and ongoing contract management within a tight time-scale required to avoid falling wholesale gas prices.

Barnsley, Doncaster and Rotherham PFI

We advised the building contractors on the civil engineering and groundworks contracts and the superstructure and automation contracts for the multi-million pounds waste to energy plant provided by Shanks/Scottish and Southern for the benefit of Barnsley, Doncaster and Rotherham councils.  This contract package was based on NEC3 which was heavily amended to suit a bespoke PFI sub-contract mechanism with two different contracts dealing with the groundworks and civil engineering followed by the superstructure and commissioning presses, needing detailed interaction between the contractors to avoid inappropriate risk share arrangements. This was a PFI based structure so the top contracts were bespoke project agreements but by the time they came down to the building sub-contractor they were based on NEC3 with PFI concepts inserted as amendments leading to a complicated contract which had to meet bank funding for PFI expectations while also complying with the law on construction contracts.

If you’re looking for legal advice for your manufacturing or engineering business please call our lawyers for a consultation. 

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Take a look at our recent article on manufacturing in Midlands Insider

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Law & Manufacturing Autumn 2016

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