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Legal aid for towns and municipalities

The Law Office of Hartmann, Jelínek, Fráňa and Partners has prepared a new product for its clients intended specially for towns and municipalities in the Czech Republic. With regards to content, the package has been tailored to meet the requirements of these entities, based on the many years of experience of the law office with services of this kind. Municipalities and towns have at their disposal lawyers with a professional focus on private and public law. Arrangement of services into a comprehensive package also allows for setting of services when payment is made for work actually performed.

A comprehensive legal audit constitutes an integral part of the package, a specific legal service consisting of in-depth analysis of the client’s legal documents, identification of risk areas and proposal of measures leading towards elimination of these risks.

Current offer

In cooperation between the client and the law office, arrangement of legal services into a comprehensive package allows for optimisation of management of the municipality’s assets including any possible debts and streamlining performance of public administration as well as uncovering hidden reserves in the activity of the municipal authority. The content of the package can be tailored to meet the specific requirements of the client. Procedure has also proven itself, when on the basis of an initial interview between the lawyer and representatives of the municipality, we identify the basic requirements of the municipality and project these into the final form of the package. The first step is performance of a comprehensive legal audit in cooperation with the client, output from which is, among other things, optimisation of the final form of the package.

How to order the package, how to gain more detailed information?

  1. If you are interested in our new legal service or if you would merely like to find out more, you can contact us at the following e-mail address: recepcehk@hjf.cz.
  2. We will arrange a date for an informative meeting in the law office or at your municipal office. There will be room at this meeting to answer all of your questions.
  3. According to the results of this informative meeting, we will draw up the optimum form of the package in relation to your requirements.

Introduction to the service

The new package of legal services called Professional services for towns and municipalities offered by the Law Office of Hartmann, Jelínek, Fráňa and Partners is inspired by a similar product, which HJF already now successfully offers its existing clients – small and medium-sized enterprises. The package of services for towns and municipalities is based on its basic idea, which consists in transfer of worries and responsibilities relating to legal problems to the lawyer – a professional in the field of law, yet in terms of content, the package is fully tailored to meet the needs of smaller towns or larger municipalities.

The answer to why the law office deals with precisely this group of municipalities is simple: we are concerned here with a group of towns and municipalities, which is most endangered by the latest legislative trends. Despite the fact that every town has its own problems, which the local political representation must struggle with, they seem to have one especially pressing problem in common. This is the shift in responsibility for administration of public affairs from a national to a local level, which although gradual, is a long-term and unremitting shift. Unfortunately, this shift is not accompanied by the appropriate legal support from the state. With a persisting deficit in public finances, it cannot be expected that the situation will take a turn for the better in the near future.

Municipalities and towns are thus forced, and will continue to be forced in the future, to look after themselves. The development of each municipality is dependent to a fundamental extent on how its representatives will be able to get to grips with their responsibilities, how they will be able to utilise the opportunities on offer, and how they will be able to face up to the risks which this period of time brings with it.

There are currently a lot of grant programmes on offer, use of which can be utilised to significantly contribute towards development of the municipality. However, drawing on these is often very demanding on the formal side and despite the maximum effort and goodwill, it is not infrequently that all such efforts come to nothing and the recipient of the grant of public support is obliged to return the funds gained. After having studied the government’s programme declaration, it can be expected that there will soon be a tightening up of the act on submission of public contracts, which will certainly lead to an increase in demands on submitters of public contracts. There is talk that economic management of the municipalities will be subject to control by the Supreme Audit Office. In all of these areas, it is the municipality that is responsible for correct procedure (i.e. procedure in line with the law), or more precisely, its political representation.

Other than threats, there are also opportunities here – the municipality is, among other things, entitled to manage its affairs via generally binding byelaws, which it is entitled to issue on the basis of the Constitution. The Constitutional Court recently abandoned its practice to date, which was very strict for municipalities, which the real effectiveness of this constitutional competence demanded. In the future, municipalities will be entitled to issue byelaws to regulate local affairs even in cases when the law does not explicitly authorise them to do so. Even so, many generally binding byelaws are suspended by the Ministry of the Interior and subsequently cancelled by the Constitutional Court, as they are deemed defective. This is a shame as a correctly prepared byelaw can help resolve many pressing problems, which are of local importance, and are thus too subtle for the state to resolve.

The package of legal services intended for municipalities offers them a helping hand there where the state fails. Through this package, the Law Office of Hartmann, Jelínek, Fráňa and Partners offers municipalities and towns the possibility of cooperating with experienced lawyers – legal professionals, whose ranks include experts specialising in specific areas of the law.

When preparing the package, we endeavoured to make it economically accessible to those for whom it was intended. It is a fact that for some municipalities and towns, it is not economically expedient to maintain cooperation with a wide range of specialised experts merely because they may use their services at some point in the future. This is why the core of our package is made up of services which can be used for the daily running of a town, whereas simply put, really specialised and accessible services are available for situations when you really do need them. As soon as such a situation occurs, we are prepared to get to work immediately and provide the required legal service not only on the highest possible level of quality, but also quickly.

Package for municipalities: content of the private law part

Consultation while performing the independent and transferred competences of the municipality

When required, we offer consultancy in terms of performance of independent and transferred competences of the municipality. Lawyers and articled clerks are prepared to answer simple queries over the telephone. Other cases are resolved in the form of telephone or e-mail job submission and the related e-mail replies. The law office guarantees reaction within the agreed deadline, the length of which depends on the type of package selected. Within the reaction time, you will receive a reply to most regular queries. If answering a query will require a longer amount of time, part of the reply in the reaction time will be stipulation of a fixed date on which the final material will be processed.

Contracts

Municipalities and towns are entities which enter into contractual relations with other entities in terms of their everyday activity. We offer legal consultation when negotiating contractual conditions, comment on contracts and drawing up of contractual documentation. We also offer subsequent activity consisting in legal interpretation of contractual provisions and resolution of situations resulting from contracts.

Debts

Payment morals of entities entering into contractual relations are not absolutely perfect nowadays, quite the opposite in fact. In this field, we offer resolution of debts from sending of reminders before court action to debtors, filing a complaint, representation in judicial proceedings, representation in distraint or enforcement proceedings. We thus offer overall management and administration of debts. We also offer representation in insolvency proceedings.

Labour law

Municipalities and towns also act as employers. In this area, we offer consultation and preparation of documents according to the Labour Code. It is also possible to perform a legal audit of existing documents of the municipality/town – employer.

Package for municipalities: content of the public law part

Consultation while performing the independent and transferred competences of the municipality

When required, we offer consultancy in terms of performance of independent and transferred competences of the municipality. Lawyers and articled clerks are prepared to answer simple queries over the telephone. Other cases are resolved in the form of telephone or e-mail job submission and the related e-mail replies. The law office guarantees reaction within the agreed deadline, the length of which depends on the type of package selected. Within the reaction time, you will receive a reply to most regular queries. If answering a query will require a longer amount of time, part of the reply in the reaction time will be stipulation of a fixed date on which the final material will be processed.

Public contracts

Municipalities and towns are important submitters of public contracts. The Act on Public Contracts imposes many obligations on submitters of public contracts, non-adherence to which is subject to disciplinary action by the Office for the Protection of Competition. As an optional service, we offer comprehensive legal support in the agenda of public contracts, the scope of which depends on the individual requirements of the client. The service is offered as an additional one, subject to advantageous conditions, which depend on the scope in which the service is provided, scope of the public contract and type of package selected.

Grants, budget discipline and financial control

Municipalities nowadays have the possibility of achieving financing of their investment plans from the state budget or funds of the European Union. Gaining a grant and problem-free implementation of such a plan requires adherence to a wide range of rules. The result of violating these rules is the obligation to return the funds provided and to make payments for violating budget discipline. As an optional service, use of which is a matter for the client to decide on, we offer consultation in the phase of gaining grants, checks in terms of a legal audit over the course of implementation of the plan and, if necessary, also legal representation during subsequent control. Legal services in this area are provided by lawyers specialising in the administration process and judicial review of administrative decisions.

Preparation of generally binding byelaws

Current practice of the Constitutional Court already allows municipalities, to a significant extent, to issue generally binding byelaws to regulate local affairs, without any special legal authorisation being necessary to do so. Despite this, a wide range of generally binding byelaws are currently cancelled by the Constitutional Court subject to proposal by the Ministry of the Interior due to their conflict with the law. A significant part of the right to local government administration thus remains de facto unused. As an optional service, we offer close cooperation on preparation of generally binding byelaws in such a way that if they are reviewed by the Constitutional Court, they will hold up. The agenda is handled by a specialist in the field of constitutional law.

Recent awards
Právnická firma roku 2014
The Law Office of Hartmann, Jelínek, Fráňa and Partners
is one of the recommended law firma in the field of criminal law.

ocenění 2013
The Law Office of Hartmann, Jelínek, Fráňa and Partners
is one of the recommended law firma in the field of criminal law.

firma roku 2012
The Law Office of Hartmann, Jelínek, Fráňa and Partners
is one of the highly recommended law firma in the field of criminal law.