I am a longstanding specialist in public & regulatory law and act in both contentious and non-contentious matters.
My 30 years’ experience spans all points on the compass including work for central and local government, the NHS, NDPBs, professional regulators, private companies, national charities and other bodies with public functions. This includes advisory work and related litigation ranging from judicial reviews, statutory appeals, Tribunals to trustee/member disputes.
I am ranked as a Band 1 lawyer for Administrative & Public Law in Chambers and a leader for public sector in Legal 500. I am also recommended in the directories for local government, elections, professional discipline and information law. I am ranked in the top ten public policy lawyers nationally in the parliamentary publication, Mace Index and am a Tribunal Judge.
Melanie Carter is a very good communicator, with Olympic-standard expertise in public law. In whatever case we instruct her, she is totally focused on the best outcome. It is very reassuring when someone at the top of their game, as Melanie is, is so able to make complex matters relatively easy for their client to understand.
I am a trusted adviser to various public authorities, regulators, charities and private companies, often operating at Board level and as external General Counsel. I have personally devised legal frameworks and drafted the statutory legislation or constitutional documents (e.g. primary and secondary legislation, Royal Charters, Codes of Conduct, disciplinary and complaints policies and procedures) for their implementation.
I led on the research for and then co-authored with the Law Society the International Toolkit for Women lawyers.
I have a particular expertise in:
- Inquiries and investigations working for or having worked on the Covid Inquiry, the Independent Child Sexual Abuse Inquiry, the Grenfell Inquiry, the Brook House Inquiry and the Infected Blood Inquiry. I have been appointed individually as an independent investigator in local government and NHS and am an independent adjudicator.
- Central Government, having worked previously on the Crown Commercial framework for Central Government and in-house at the Home Office and Treasury Solicitors including expertise in Parliamentary procedure and legislative drafting.
- Local government and NHS audit, as the national leader in legal advice in the private sector in this area.
- Professional regulation, having for many years been a legal assessor and adviser in public law to a range of professional regulatory bodies.
- Charities regulation including by the Charity Commission (compliance and statutory inquiries) and the Fundraising Regulator and broad governance issues.
- Freedom of Information, having acted on many requests, First Tier and Upper Tier Tribunal cases.
I cannot speak highly enough of Melanie. She is very personable, professional, competent, thorough and excellent in her role.
- Public law for regulators in the time of coronavirus, The Law Society Gazette
- Waiving privilege and ‘cherry picking’, The Law Society Gazette
- I have led a major investigation into the finances of a local authority for an external auditor including the first ever use of an advisory notice for a bankrupt authority.
- I have acted for a financial institution in securing an injunction against a public body.
- I have drafted legislation for regulatory bodies, MPs and foreign governments.
- I have worked on the Covid, Child Sexual Abuse, Grenfell, Infected Blood and Brook House Inquiries.
- I have advised on challenges to clinical commissioning arrangements and continuing care.
- I act for a Parliamentary regulator.
- I am advising a professional regulator on an international prosecution.
- I have given advice in relation to NHS finance.
- I have been appointed to act as an independent investigator in relation to a local government’s corporate governance arrangements.
- I am acting for a national appointing audit body on its powers and duties.
- I have worked for national charities in relation to their statutory investigations by the Charity Commission.
- I advised on the creation of a separate and independent regulatory body for a profession.
- I have advised on the constitutional amendments for a key legal regulator.
Melanie is always totally focused on the best outcome for client.
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Melanie is excellent and a real force of nature.
Melanie's areas of expertise
- Central Government & Agencies
- Local Government
- Administrative and Public Law
- Ombud schemes
- Regulatory challenges
- Judicial review
- Charity Law
- Litigation & dispute resolution
- Equalities, diversity and discrimination
- CQC Regulation
- Internal Investigations and Inquiries in Health
- Regulatory Due Diligence
- Information Law
- Freedom of Information Act
- Investigations & Inquiries
- Internal Investigations and Inquiries
- Inquiries and Reviews
- Litigation and Dispute Resolution