Protecting, enhancing and building reputations

5-8 The Sanctuary
London, SW1P 3JS
+44 (0) 207 340 0380
advice@sanctuarycounsel.com

Services

We have the track record, capability and experience to advise clients on a broad range of reputational challenges and opportunities.

We have created a proposition and team best suited to the challenge and work together to give the right advice. And we have a dynamic, entrepreneurial culture which means we never take our clients for granted.

Services

We have the track record, capability and experience to advise clients on a broad range of reputational challenges and opportunities.

We have created a proposition and team best suited to the challenge and work together to give the right advice. And we have a dynamic, entrepreneurial culture which means we never take our clients for granted.

We have the track record, capability and experience to advise clients on a broad range of reputational challenges and opportunities. Our advisers have deep expertise advising clients in relation to specific stakeholders but recognise siloed advice is no longer good enough.

We create a proposition and team best suited to the challenge and work together to give the right advice. And we have a dynamic, entrepreneurial culture which means we never take our clients for granted.

Business and Financial Communications

Businesses are navigating a more complex and risky reputational environment but also one in which there are more options and channels than ever before to project their own messages. Stakeholder groups have their own needs and the days of communicating in silos are over. Businesses rightly want advisers who understand a range of stakeholders and can give multi-faceted advice. Our team has deep expertise in the rigours and discipline of communicating with capital markets, both equity and debt, as well as the necessary creativity and experience to handle other important stakeholders.

We advise on a range of situations including financial calendar, M&A, fund raising as well as narrative development, campaigning, content creation, thought leadership and crisis management.

Government Advisory

Governments today face the most challenging geopolitical context since the fall of the Berlin Wall. In the age of the poly-crisis, countries must leverage every possible resource if they are to successfully pursue their national interest and deliver peace and prosperity for their citizens. A country’s reputation – which is far too often undervalued – has a critical role to play in modern foreign policy. Through a carefully calibrated analytical framework for soft power, we provide heads of state/government, ministers and senior diplomats with the insights, strategies and execution plans to protect, strengthen and leverage the reputational assets of their state. 

Crisis & Litigation Support

Reputations are fragile and crisis can make or break them. These high-pressure, high-stakes moments call for quick and calm judgement, sound advice and clear strategy. We provide specialist support to clients in times of reputational crisis – whether it be data leaks, legal cases, employment disputes or other corporate emergencies.

We will make our senior team available round the clock to provide reputational guidance alongside legal and operational concerns.

Campaigns

It’s never been more critical to win hearts and minds if businesses and organisations are to achieve their goals in a rapidly-changing, multi-dimensional operating environment.

Our campaigns support leaders, businesses and brands through significant moments, be they market entry, disruption, business transformation, leadership transition or specific strategic challenges.

With stakes high and appetite for risk low, our approach is grounded in research and insight, guided by thoughtful strategy and executed with creative discipline, unlocking our clients stories and connecting the dots across external and employee audiences, channels and disciplines to drive impact and outcomes.

Programme Strategy

We believe reputations are built in multi-faceted ways and seek to use all the tools available for promoting and protecting them. We help clients to craft and execute highly curated programmes of events, partnerships and engagement with major global forums that help them to achieve their goals and influence their reputations.

Our colleagues have supported Prime Ministers, Members of the Royal Family, City Mayors and Heads of Government, and through our extensive networks and connectivity across the governmental, diplomatic, thinktank, academic, third sector, media and philanthropic landscapes, we are able to bring to bear a unique strategic offering to clients.

Individual Counsel

An individual’s reputation is amongst their most highly prized assets. We build personalised and pro-active programmes for successful individuals who want to do more in corporate or public life, be associated with ideas or further their business objectives.

Our relationships with individual clients are trusted, discreet and bespoke – always tied to their ambitions and goals and using all of our advisers' judgement, networks and experience to achieve them.

PRIVACY & COOKIES POLICY

Your privacy is very important to us.

In this policy (“Policy”), we explain to you how your information is collected, used and disclosed by Sanctuary Counsel Limited and how we collect information through the use of cookies. We also explain to you how you can access and update your information, including a right to object to some processing that we carry out or where we rely on consent and how to withdraw the consent.

INFORMATION WE COLLECT

We obtain information from or about you in the following scenarios:

(i) information you directly give us by corresponding with us by phone, email or otherwise. The information you give us may include your name, email address, postal address and phone numbers and information relevant for us to assist you in our capacity as a reputation management firm.

(ii) we may also receive information about you from other publicly available sources. This includes but not limited to content that is publicly available on social media.

You are not required to provide us with any information regarding your medical or health condition, race or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious or philosophical beliefs, or other categories of information defined as sensitive or special categories of data under applicable data protection laws (“Sensitive Information”) in order to use our services. We do not knowingly solicit or collect, and you should not provide to us, any such Sensitive Information.

COOKIES

The only cookies we use are Google Universal Analytics. These cookies are used to collect information about how visitors use our website. We may use the information to compile reports and to help us improve the website. The cookies collect information in an anonymous form, including the number of visitors to the website and blog, where visitors have come to the website from the pages they visited.

HOW WE USE AND PROCESS YOUR DATA

Any information that we collect about you will only be used to for the purpose of providing our services to you.

Our legal basis for collecting and using the personal information described in this Policy will depend on the personal information concerned and the specific context in which we collect and use it.

We will normally collect personal information from you where we need the personal information to perform a contract with you (for example, to provide our services to you), where the processing is in our legitimate interests and not overridden by your data protection interests or fundamental rights and freedoms (for example, our direct marketing activities in accordance with your preferences), or where we have your consent to do so.

Your personal data will be held in confidence and not passed to any company, other than those agreed, without your express permission or unless we are required by law.

We are committed to protect and secure your personal information. Despite our commitment, no security system can be 100% effective and we cannot guarantee that your information will be secure in all situations.  We will nonetheless take all reasonable and appropriate steps to ensure the safety and security of your personal information.  This includes using at least industry standard security measures to protect the loss, misuse, and unintended alteration of the personal information under our control. 

RETENTION OF YOUR DATA

Your personal data that we process for any purpose or purposes shall not be kept for longer than is necessary for that purpose or those purposes and in all circumstances, we will only keep your personal data within the timeframes allowed by law and for so long as is necessary to comply with our legal obligations.

TRANSFER OF DATA

We do not as a matter of course transfer your personal information outside of the UK. If we need to transfer personal information to countries outside of the UK and other regions with comprehensive data protection laws, we will ensure that the information is transferred in accordance with the applicable data protection laws.

YOUR RIGHTS

Your right to object, access, correct and delete.

You may instruct us to provide you with any personal information we hold about you. Provision of such information will be subject to the supply of appropriate evidence of your identity. We may withhold such personal information to the extent permitted by law.

You have the right to have any inaccurate personal data about you rectified and, taking into account the purposes of the processing, to have any incomplete personal data about you completed.

In some circumstances you have the right to the erasure of your personal data without undue delay. Those circumstances include: the personal data are no longer necessary in relation to the purposes for which they were collected or otherwise processed; you withdraw consent to consent-based processing; you object to the processing under certain rules of applicable data protection law. However, there are exclusions of the right to erasure. The general exclusions include where processing is necessary: for exercising the right of freedom of expression and information; for compliance with a legal obligation; or for the establishment, exercise or defence of legal claims.

In some circumstances you have the right to restrict the processing of your personal data. Those circumstances are:

  • you contest the accuracy of the personal data; processing is unlawful but you oppose erasure;
  • we no longer need the personal data for the purposes of our processing, but you require personal data for the establishment, exercise or defence of legal claims; and you have objected to processing, pending the verification of that objection. Where processing has been restricted on this basis, we may continue to store your personal data. However, we will only otherwise process it: with your consent; for the establishment, exercise or defence of legal claims; for the protection of the rights of another natural or legal person; or for reasons of important public interest.

UPDATES AND CONTACT

Please let us know if the personal information which we hold about you needs to be corrected or updated.

We may update this Policy from time-to-time by posting a new version on our website. You should check this page occasionally to remain informed.

If you have any questions or requests about this Policy or our treatment of your personal information, please write to us by post at Sanctuary Counsel Limited, 5 – 8 The Sanctuary, London SW1P 3JS.

You have the right to make a complaint at any time to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), the UK supervisory authority for data protection issues (www.ico.org.uk). We would, however, appreciate the chance to deal with your concerns before you approach the ICO so please contact us in the first instance.

GDPR Candidate privacy notice (UK)

Sanctuary Counsel Ltd is a “data controller”. This means that we are responsible for deciding how we hold and use personal information about you. You are being sent a copy of this privacy notice because you are applying for work with us (whether as an employee, worker or contractor). It makes you aware of how and why your personal data will be used, namely for the purposes of the recruitment exercise, and how long it will usually be retained for. It provides you with certain information that must be provided under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Data protection principles

We will comply with data protection law and principles, which means that your data will be:

  • Used lawfully, fairly and in a transparent way.
  • Collected only for valid purposes that we have clearly explained to you and not used in any way that is incompatible with those purposes.
  • Relevant to the purposes we have told you about and limited only to those purposes.
  • Accurate and kept up to date.
  • Kept only as long as necessary for the purposes we have told you about.
  • Kept securely.

The kind of information we hold about you

In connection with your application for work with us, we will collect, store, and use the following categories of personal information about you:

  • The information you have provided to us in your curriculum vitae and covering letter.
  • The information you have provided on our application form, including name, title, address, telephone number, personal email address, date of birth, gender, employment history, qualifications.
  • Any information you provide to us during an interview.

We may also collect, store and use the following “special categories” of more sensitive personal information:

  • Information about your race or ethnicity, religious beliefs, sexual orientation and political opinions.
  • Information about your health, including any medical condition, health and sickness records.
  • Information about criminal convictions and offences.

How is your personal information collected?

We collect personal information about candidates from the following sources:

  • You, the candidate.
  • Recruitment agencies.
  • Disclosure and Barring Service in respect of criminal convictions.
  • Your named referees.

How we will use information about you

We will use the personal information we collect about you to:

  • Assess your skills, qualifications, and suitability for the role.
  • Carry out background and reference checks, where applicable.
  • Communicate with you about the recruitment process.
  • Keep records related to our hiring processes.
  • Comply with legal or regulatory requirements.

It is in our legitimate interests to decide whether to appoint you to a role because we have determined that there is a business need for this role.

We also need to process your personal information to decide whether to enter into a contract with you.

Having received some or all of the information listed above we will then process that information to decide whether you meet the basic requirements to be shortlisted for the role. If you do, we will decide whether your application is strong enough to invite you for an interview. If we decide to call you for an interview, we will use the information you provide to us at the interview to decide whether to offer you the role.

If you fail to provide personal information

If you fail to provide information when requested, which is necessary for us to consider your application (such as evidence of qualifications or work history), we may not be able to process your application successfully. For example, if we require a credit check or references for this role and you fail to provide us with relevant details, we will not be able to take your application further.

How we use particularly sensitive personal information

We will use your particularly sensitive personal information in the following ways:

  • We will use information about your disability status to consider whether we need to provide appropriate adjustments during the recruitment process, for example whether adjustments need to be made during a test or interview.
  • We will use information about your race or national or ethnic origin, religious, philosophical or moral beliefs, or your sexual life or sexual orientation, to ensure meaningful equal opportunity monitoring and reporting.

Information about criminal convictions

If appropriate, we will collect information about your criminal convictions history if we would like to offer you the role (conditional on checks and any other conditions, such as references, being satisfactory). We may be entitled to carry out a criminal records check in order to satisfy ourselves that there is nothing in your criminal convictions history which makes you unsuitable for the role.

This may apply if:

  • We are legally required to carry out criminal record checks for those carrying out a particular role.
  • The role for which you have applied is one which is listed on the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975 and/or is also specified in the Police Act 1997 (Criminal Records) Regulations so is eligible for an appropriate check from the Disclosure and Barring Service.
  • The role for which you have applied requires a high degree of trust and integrity and so we would like to ask you to seek a basic disclosure of your criminal records history.

We have in place an appropriate policy document and safeguards which we are required by law to maintain when processing such data.

Automated decision-making

You will not be subject to decisions that will have a significant impact on you based solely on automated decision-making.

Data sharing

Why might you share my personal information with third parties?

If necessary, we will only share your personal information with third parties for the purposes of processing your application. All our third-party service providers and other entities in the group are required to take appropriate security measures to protect your personal information in line with our policies. We do not allow our third-party service providers to use your personal data for their own purposes. We only permit them to process your personal data for specified purposes and in accordance with our instructions.

Data security

We have put in place appropriate security measures to prevent your personal information from being accidentally lost, used or accessed in an unauthorised way, altered or disclosed. In addition, we limit access to your personal information to those employees, agents, contractors and other third parties who have a business need-to-know. They will only process your personal information on our instructions and they are subject to a duty of confidentiality.

We have put in place procedures to deal with any suspected data security breach and will notify you and any applicable regulator of a suspected breach where we are legally required to do so.

Data retention

How long will you use my information for?

We will retain your personal information for a period of 12 months after we receive your application. We retain your personal information for that period so that we can show, in the event of a legal claim, that we have not discriminated against candidates on prohibited grounds and that we have conducted the recruitment exercise in a fair and transparent way. After this period, we will securely destroy your personal information in accordance with our data retention policy.

If we wish to retain your personal information on file, on the basis that a further opportunity may arise in future and we may wish to consider you for that, we will write to you separately, seeking your explicit consent to retain your personal information for a fixed period on that basis. 

Rights of access, correction, erasure, and restriction

Your rights in connection with personal information

Under certain circumstances, by law you have the right to:

  • Request access to your personal information (commonly known as a “data subject access request”). This enables you to receive a copy of the personal information we hold about you and to check that we are lawfully processing it.
  • Request correction of the personal information that we hold about you. This enables you to have any incomplete or inaccurate information we hold about you corrected.
  • Request erasure of your personal information. This enables you to ask us to delete or remove personal information where there is no good reason for us continuing to process it. You also have the right to ask us to delete or remove your personal information where you have exercised your right to object to processing (see below).
  • Object to processing of your personal information where we are relying on a legitimate interest (or those of a third party) and there is something about your particular situation which makes you want to object to processing on this ground. You also have the right to object where we are processing your personal information for direct marketing purposes.
  • Request the restriction of processing of your personal information. This enables you to ask us to suspend the processing of personal information about you, for example if you want us to establish its accuracy or the reason for processing it.
  • Request the transfer of your personal information to another party.

If you want to review, verify, correct or request erasure of your personal information, object to the processing of your personal data, or request that we transfer a copy of your personal information to another party, please contact the HR & Office Manager in writing.

Data protection officer

We have appointed a data privacy manager to oversee compliance with this privacy notice. If you have any questions about this privacy notice or how we handle your personal information, please contact the data privacy manager. You have the right to make a complaint at any time to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), the UK supervisory authority for data protection issues.

Code of Conduct

Overview

  1. The Office of the Registrar of Consultant Lobbyists (ORCL) was created following the Transparency of Lobbying, Non-Party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Act 2014 (‘The Act’) coming into force. The ORCL was created to oversee the Register of Consultant Lobbyists. Sanctuary Counsel signed onto the Register in December 2022.
  2. The work of Sanctuary Counsel takes many forms, the vast majority of which does not fall under The Act’s definition of lobbying. By registering as consultant lobbyists, all employees of Sanctuary Counsel must adhere to the principles of transparency and good governance in our client work, some of which may fall under the ORCL’s definition of consultant lobbying.
  3. This document provides specific guidance on the expectations for, and rules governing, conduct of Sanctuary Counsel staff when undertaking any client work that may be related to lobbying in the UK. It is part of a framework of policies covering all aspects of our work. It is essential that all staff follow this code, and it should guide staff on how to conduct client work that falls under lobbying as defined by The Act. It has been written to be accessible and clear to Sanctuary Counsel’s consultants and to our clients.
  4. The policies contained herein apply to people employed by Sanctuary Counsel as full-time staff or anyone working under a temporary contract in support of the firm on lobbying services. No one may undertake client servicing work unless they have read and understood this document, and undergone dedicated training.
  5. As underlined by our values, we expect staff to operate at all times with the utmost integrity and to always strive to deliver the gold standard of analysis, advice, and execution in their work. We always operate in compliance with the laws and regulations of the UK and any other jurisdiction in which we work. This means we do not undertake any work that is prohibited by government regulation or the laws of England and Wales. The same holds true for the government regulations and laws of any jurisdiction in which our work is carried out, or in which any relevant client is registered, trades, or resides.
  6. Our staff are expected to always work in accordance with the standards of behaviour set out in the staff handbook (given as part of the standard induction process) whenever they are working for, or representing Sanctuary Counsel and/or its clients.

Clients

  1. When taking on new clients, the senior leadership team (Partners) will determine whether we have any existing conflicts of interest, which could preclude our involvement in a commercial relationship with said client. Additionally, our due diligence process for new clients includes sanctions checks in the UK via the Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation.
  2. Sanctuary Counsel will not take on new clients where we know a conflict of interest exists, or where there are ethical or other legitimate concerns regarding the nature, business, or provenance of a potential client as assessed by the senior leadership team.
  3. We do not engage in lobbying on matters where a client has a conflict of interests with another client, or we believe such a conflict could emerge. However, where clients have a common interest in relation to a particular matter, their objectives are clearly aligned, and they have given prior written consent to us representing them both, then it is acceptable for us to do so. We do not engage in lobbying on matters where we see a conflict (or potential for conflict) of interests between a client and Sanctuary Counsel, as assessed by the senior leadership team.
  4. In order to undertake any lobbying activity (as defined by The Act), clients must give Sanctuary Counsel staff clear instruction and consent to undertake such activity. This must be given in writing. Our ways of working mean that consultants have effective safeguards in place to protect the confidential information of all clients. Any staff unclear on the handling of confidential information or with any concerns should seek advice from their line manager.
  5. We only lobby for clients where their instructions are clear and have come from a person authorised within the client organisation to give those instructions. If staff have any reason to suspect that instructions given by a client do not actually represent the client’s wishes or interests, they must flag with their line manager for discussion and guidance before any action is taken.

Register of Consultant Lobbyists

  1. The Act mandated the creation of the Register of Consultant Lobbyists. As set out in the legislation, any organisation that conducts the business of consultant lobbying, as defined by the act, is required to join the register.
  2. The Government’s stated intention underpinning the introduction of the Register of Consultant Lobbyists was to bring greater transparency to the process of lobbying Ministers and Permanent Secretaries on behalf of a third party.
  3. The key points of the Register and how it affects Sanctuary Counsel are as follows:
    • We must submit quarterly returns and list any clients we have lobbied for (i.e. activity that falls under the legislation).
    • We do not have to list all of our clients, only those where we have undertaken lobbying activities.
    • We do not have to submit any details of the conversation, and confidentiality must always be respected.
    • Sanctuary Counsel staff should follow instructions from their line managers on what to record to ensure we are always operating in full compliance with regulations set out in The Act.
  4. If staff have any concerns or questions about work relating to lobbying, the type of activity that falls under the definition, or the Register, they should seek advice from line managers or any of the Partners. For reference, the source of the details of The Act and its relevant regulations can be found here: https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2014/4/contents/enacted.
  5. Found within The Act are the most important sections governing the conduct of all consultant lobbying activity. Most relevant, The Act makes clear that lobbying pertains to contact with ‘a Minister of the Crown or Permanent Secretary,’. Moreover, The Act identifies persons of equivalence to those roles, given as: Cabinet Secretary; Chief Executive of Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs; Chief Medical Officer; Director of Public Prosecutions; First Parliamentary Counsel; Government Chief Scientific Adviser; Head of the Civil Service; Prime Minister’s Adviser for Europe and Global Issues.
  6. Lobbying occurs where a person or entity has had direct oral, written or electronic communications personally with: A Minister of the Crown, Permanent Secretary (or equivalents) currently in post, referred to as ‘Government Representatives’ relating to items such as:
    • The development, adoption or modification of any proposal of the Government to make or amend primary or subordinate legislation;
    • The development, adoption or modification of any other policy of the Government;
    • The taking of any steps by the Government in relation to any contract, grant, financial assistance, licence or authorisation; or
    • The exercise of any other function of Government.
  1. This communication is made in the course of business and in return for payment on behalf of a client, or payment is received with the expectation that the communication will be made at a later date.
  2. A well-functioning Government requires full and open access to the latest knowledge, data, and insights that lobbyists can provide to policy makers and decision makers. Lobbying is a perfectly legal process when done properly and it represents an important part of the UK’s democratic process. This well-regulated process ultimately improves the quality of policy making in the UK. However, lobbying activity must always be carried out transparently, with integrity and in good faith.

Guidance

  1. Our staff must always ensure that clients and colleagues are fully informed about the nature of the representations we make, what can be delivered and achieved through our work, and what other parties must do to enable the desired result.
  2. We must never deliberately conceal our role as representative of a client or employer, even if the client or employer remains anonymous in discussions or communications, we must be open about their objectives and desired outcome with respect to our representations must be made clear.
  3. As we operate with the highest respect for integrity and trust, Sanctuary Counsel staff must only provide and use information that is accurate and true in conducting their work. No information should ever be deliberately omitted or misrepresented in oral briefings, written memos, public communications, statements, or any other material that could be deployed in course of lobbying. We must always be rigorous in our use of information, research, data, and insights. We should always check the reliability and accuracy of any information we disseminate for the purposes of lobbying.
  4. Activity that constitutes lobbying is largely encompassed in the direct oral, written or electronic communications to Ministers of the Crown or Permanent Secretaries. This includes any conversation, letter or email that has a bearing on any function of Government, including:
    • Development of a policy/proposal/legislation
    • Adoption of a policy/proposal/legislation
    • Modification of a policy/proposal/legislation
    • Contracts
    • Grants
    • Licences
    • Financial assistance
    • Regulation
  1. Should staff engage in any such conversation or communications, they must record their interactions for our regulatory compliance. Our code of conduct is such that it is better to be overly sensitive in interpretations of the regulations set out in The Act. It is better to assume anything open to interpretation could be considered lobbying activity and to log and report that activity. That said, guidance below on what a qualifying communication is should help determine whether or not any activity should be recorded and reported in line with the rules of the Office of the Registrar of Consultant Lobbyists:
    • Relevant communications are for the UK only.
    • It does not matter where or how the contact is made or communications relayed, for example if you send an email from another country or if you are at party conference.
    • The communication has to be made directly to a Minister/official.
    • If the Minister/official initiates at a meeting, and in the course of that meeting there is a conversation relating to a government function, this is lobbying.
    • It is a requirement of our code that consultants take note of a relevant conversation or communication that falls under the definition of lobbying, and reports the conversation having taken place to the responsible Partner for filing reports to the ORCL.

    If you have any questions about what might constitute lobbying activity, speak to your line manager.

  2. Any electronic communications that constitute lobbying activity must be made using Sanctuary Counsel’s own IT system. Please bear in mind that:
    • If more than one client is benefiting from the communication with a minister or permanent secretary, then each client should be recorded and subsequently reported on the Register of Consultant Lobbyists after registration.
    • Payment by a third party (made on behalf of a client) would still meet the criteria.
  3. Our expectations for staff with respect to this code of conduct is as follows:
  4. Always act with the highest levels of honesty and integrity and ensure that any and all information, analysis, and insights provided in the course of lobbying are truthful and accurate;
    • Always operate with total transparency in disclosing the identity of relevant clients and ensure that quarterly reporting for the Registrar of Consultant Lobbyist is completed on time and is accurate;
    • Never misrepresent the interests of clients;
    • Never exaggerate Sanctuary Counsel’s lobbying capabilities or the reach of our network;
    • Never engage or contract through a third party, any Member of Parliament, Member of the House of Lords, member of the Scottish Parliament or the National Assembly for Wales or the Northern Ireland Assembly or the London Assembly to undertake any lobbying work on our behalf;
    • All Sanctuary Counsel staff are required to read this code of conduct and supporting documents during induction. Training on the code of conduct is mandatory, as are periodic refresher courses to ensure the highest standards of compliance. Staff are required to sign a standardised form confirming they have understood our code of conduct and expectations for behaviour with respect to the Register of Consultant Lobbyists and the related training material
  1. All staff are required to read the ORCL guidance, which can be found here: https://registrarofconsultantlobbyists.org.uk/guidance-on-registration-and-qirs-including-specialist-guidance-for-think-tanks-and-support-service-providers-to-appgs/

Enforcement & Concerns

  1. We must underline that failure to comply with the statutory requirements of The Act could result in a fine. The Act grants the Registrar criminal enforcement powers to investigate any violation of the regulations set out in The Act. If Sanctuary Counsel staff are in doubt on any issue relating to recording and reporting lobbying activity for the Register, our code requires employees to seek advice from a line manager – or any of the Partners – on whether any planned activity constitutes lobbying, and whether it should be recorded.
  2. If any members of staff are suspected to have breached this code or the statutory requirements, they will be subject first to an internal investigation. If an employee is found to have breached the code or the statutory requirements set out in The Act, we will initiative a disciplinary process. The procedure for this is set out in employment contract terms and our employee handbook.
  3. We take all concerns that anyone might have about lobbying activities very seriously. For clarity anyone is inclusive of employees, former employees, sub-contractors, third party members, volunteers and any other external individuals who wish to make a report regarding Sanctuary Counsel. Should anyone wish to raise a concern or complain about an alleged breach of the code of conduct, then please contact Sanctuary Counsel’s Chief Executive in the first instance.

Complaints Process & Procedure

Initial Process

  1. Complaints can be made by a member of Sanctuary Counsel or by an external interested party (the “Complainant”) about potential breaches of our code of conduct. Where it is an internal Complainant, complaints should be made, in the first instance, to their relevant Line Manager, our Chief Executive or HR Manager. Please see Sanctuary Counsel’s policy on Whistleblowing in the Employee Handbook for guidance.
  2. All Complainants can send complaints to our external and independent monitor (the “Independent Adjudicator”) who as at the date of this document is: Steven Janes, Commercial and Corporate Lawyer at respected legal advisory firm Kennedy Cater.
  3. Steven is qualified as a solicitor and has over 25 years’ experience as a corporate and commercial lawyer specialising in legal issues and transactions with businesses, in financial services and on government-funded projects. Complainants should be aware that when carrying out the role of Independent Adjudicator, Steven is acting as an investigator and not as a solicitor for any party; nor can he offer advice to any person involved in the process. His role also excludes reserved legal activities under the Legal Services Act 2007 and any other regulated activity (such as representation in connection with the application of the law or resolution of a legal dispute).
  4. To contact Steven on a confidential basis please use one of the following: By telephone: 0207 113 4020 / by email: steven.janes@kennedycater.com
  5. All complaints will be treated in the same manner. Any complaint must be made in writing and cite the rule breach to which it refers. The Complainant must also provide evidence, at this stage, that the rule has been breached.
  6. Either the internal Sanctuary Counsel staff member or the Independent Adjudicator (together an “Assessor”) will review the complaint from the Complainant and assess with the Complainant whether the complaint can be resolved without a formal process, or whether a formal process is required. It is a decision for the complainant as to whether a formal process is held.
  7. A formal complaints process will not be held if the Assessor (or, if a formal adjudication is required by the Complainant, the Independent Adjudicator) deems that civil or criminal legal action has been initiated, until the outcome of that legal action is known.
  8. The Complainant must agree to meet the costs of the Independent Adjudicator, and the costs of selecting the Independent Adjudicator, if the Independent Adjudicator finds against the Complainant.
  9. If the Complainant requires formal adjudication from the Independent Adjudicator about the Initial Process, the Complainant must agree to meet the costs of the Independent Adjudicator, and the costs of selecting the Independent Adjudicator, if the Independent Adjudicator deems that a formal complaints process will not be held.
  10. Similarly, a formal complaints process will not be held if the Assessor (or, if a formal adjudication is required by the complainant, the Independent Adjudicator) deems that the complaint is about Consultant Lobbying and should more properly be in the hands of the ORCL to investigate.
  11. A formal complaints process will not be held if, in the opinion of the Assessor (or, if a formal adjudication is required by the complainant, the Independent Adjudicator), the complaint has already been the subject of the same or a similar complaint.
  12. The Complainant must agree to bear their own costs of bringing the complaint and abide by any order as to costs made by the Independent Adjudicator.
  13. The Complainant must agree to respect the confidential nature of the procedure.
  14. The Complainant must agree that the decision of the Independent Adjudicator is final, and that there is no right of appeal, or any other rights of remedies against Sanctuary Counsel.
  15. In the event that the nominated Independent Adjudicator is unavailable to handle a complaint, Sanctuary Counsel reserve the right to appoint an alternative as Independent Adjudicator, who will be a qualified solicitor or barrister and be a current member of either the Law Society or Bar Council.

The Complaints Process

  1. The complaint will be given to the Independent Adjudicator and to the person or persons about whom the complaint is made (the “Respondent”). The Respondent will have five working days to respond to the Independent Adjudicator, and this response will also be given to the complainant.
  2. The Independent Adjudicator will assess the complaint and the response. The Independent Adjudicator may ask clarification questions of either party, as well as clarification questions from Sanctuary Counsel.
  3. The complaints process will normally be conducted by written representations. Should the Independent Adjudicator require a hearing in person, they will ask Sanctuary Counsel, in consultation with the Complainant, to fix a time and place for this hearing. The Independent Adjudicator will provide a process for that hearing.
  4. The Independent Adjudicator will determine if:
    1. there is no case to be heard, and the complaint dismissed; or
    2. the complaint is accepted.

Complaint Accepted

  1. If the complaint is accepted, the following process will occur:
    1. If the Respondent is a member of staff:
      1. that staff member will go into the Disciplinary Process (as set out in the Employee Handbook) of Sanctuary Counsel; and
      2. the Independent Adjudicator may require remedial action from the Respondent and may require the determination of the Independent Adjudicator and the outcome of the Disciplinary Process to be published on our website for 30 days, or for longer if the Independent Adjudicator deems the complaint sufficiently serious to merit this.
    2. If the Respondent is Sanctuary Counsel itself:
      1. it will be for the Independent Adjudicator to require remedial action to minimise the risk of future breaches of the Code; and
      2. the Independent Adjudicator may require remedial action from the Respondent, and may require the determination of the Independent Adjudicator and the outcome of the Disciplinary Process to be published on the Sanctuary Counsel website for 30 days, or for longer if the Independent Adjudicator deems the complaint sufficiently serious to merit this.
  2. Any outcome and disciplinary process or remedial action will be deemed confidential by both parties if or until it has been published on the website, which shall happen if it is required within 5 days of the remedial action / disciplinary process having concluded.

Complaint Dismissed

  1. Unless both parties agree otherwise, any outcome must remain confidential by both parties for 5 days after the remedial action/disciplinary process having concluded.

This summary of the Sanctuary Counsel Code of Conduct and Complaints Procedure issued on 10 November 2023 replaces all prior versions and remains in effect until further notice.

Sanctuary Counsel
5-8 The Sanctuary
London, SW1P 3JS
T: +44 (0) 207 340 0380