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Government fires gun on procurement of £400m general legal services panel

The Crown Commercial Service (CCS) has kick-started the procurement of a £400m panel for general legal services for use by crown bodies and other ‘permitted users’.

The panel is to comprise of two tiers, with panel customers required to use the services of suppliers on Tier 1. However, where suppliers on Tier 1 are unable to accept orders for services then suppliers in Tier 2 will be used.

The CCS anticipates a maximum of 18 suppliers to be appointed to the panel, with 12 appointed within Tier 1 and six appointed within Tier 2.

The contract is expected to start on 28 February 2017 and will run for two years, with an option to extend for up to two further periods of 12 consecutive months.

The creation of a panel for general legal services is part of the CCS’ work on replacing the existing legal services framework that expires in early 2017. The current framework has 47 suppliers and, unlike the proposed panel, is divided into lots.

The CCS also plans to set up further panels as part of the new arrangements. One will cover finance and highly complex transactions, while another will address rail related legal services. The CCS also intends to procure a panel for lower value legal services that will be open to panel customers and the wider public sector, accommodating low value and low volume transactions.

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