'Law at the heart of Government' as the strapline goes. The Treasury Solicitor's Department (TSol) is the largest team of the Government Legal Department. It provides legal services to over 180 central government departments and other publicly funded bodies in England and Wales. If it was a law firm, it would be one of the biggest in the country, employing around 1,000 people, including 650 lawyers and another 150 fee earners, handling around 30,000 disputes a year in-house and case managing those instructed out. Despite the name, they are not all solicitors either, for example, the current head and his deputy are both barristers.
Litigation accounts for just over half of the TSol workload, although it also gives non-contentious advice to those afore-mentioned government departments. The ethos strives to be businesslike, whilst maintaining the public service values of the Civil Service. With no profit share to worry about, it is all about the standard of that service.
A high volume of cases is generated by the Ministry of Defence and HM Prison Service. TSol has 2 panels of external solicitors and 4 of barristers. All personal injury claims are instructed to outside claims handlers for example.
Because of the variety of work, TSol recruits lawyers from an equal variety of specialisms, such as the recently bolstered areas of employment law, litigation, commercial contract law, public procurement law and public law in general. TSol has had to readjust and find ways of working more efficiently of course, in light of public sector cutbacks, for example implementing a new case management system, but the Civil Service remains an attractive workplace for many reasons. Flexible working arrangements and job-share schemes mean TSol retains a much higher proportion of women for all of their working careers. The variety of work, some very high profile, and the ability to concentrate purely on law and policy-making are adequate compensation for many a talented City lawyer taking a salary cut.
Recruitment is via the GLD recruitment gateway (see under 'Government Legal Department'), although contact details are provided for a TSol dedicated HR contact (see below).