Client: Inspire North
How it all began
Leeds charity Community Links is an award-winning non-profit provider of mental health and wellbeing services in Yorkshire and the Humber, supporting individuals with a wide range of mental health issues including anxiety and depression, psychosis, alcohol and substance misuse, complex needs and personality disorder.
Foundation working in the North of England exists to build better lives supporting individuals and families affected by homelessness or at risk of homelessness, leaving prison or on probation or leaving care Domestic abuse.
In October 2018 Community Links and Foundation announced a merger. The charities would come together to increase effectiveness and provide a wealth of expertise, innovation and high-quality mental health and housing services.
The parent company would be known as Inspire North. Howarth’s has been working with Community Links providing HR and employment law support for over 10 years and was chosen to support with the merger.
Creating a new group structure
The merger would create a group structure with both organisations retaining their identity and delivering front line services, and the creation of Inspire North as a Parent Company would create a more comprehensive infrastructure with faster response times.
As such, highly technical and extremely detailed employment law support was required to ensure all legalities were taken care of as part of Inspire North’s formation.
Providing on-site employment law support
Due to the level of detail required for the merger, on-site support was required for the duration of the project. Howarths’ Head of Employment Law, Charlotte Geesin, spent time working from the Community Links and Foundation’s offices, providing one-to-one support.
This included assisting the Community Links and Foundation teams with relevant staff meetings, ensuring that they were kept fully up-to-speed with developments and that legally-required follow-up letters and staff correspondence were drafted and presented to staff in a timely manner.
Charlotte provided specific and detailed guidance on TUPE – the legislation designed to protect employees if the business in which they are employed changes hands. She supported Community Links and Foundation in moving employees and any liabilities associated with the existing charities to the newly-formed Inspire North by operation of law.
A successful merger
Managing the transfer of the Head Office teams from Community Links and Foundation to Inspire North meant the project was one of significant size and complexity. However, with the specialised support of Charlotte and the Howarths team, the tight timescales were met and the project delivered successfully.
As a result of this work, and our long-standing relationship with Community Links, the whole group are now clients of Howarths.
In the client’s words
I want to thank Howarths’ for all their knowledge and expertise in helping us with a successful merger. Their constant support and advice in particular from Charlotte Geesin, Head of Employment Law, was instrumental in the smooth merging of the two charities we are most grateful and would highly recommend.