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Legal Services Update - Covid-19

Legal services move to email contact in first instance, LegalHelplineCWACCommunityCareAndEducation@cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk or 07880 781095 in an emergency to be used going forwards. Please check your inbox for email with further details which have been sent to your school email address or read the below.

In light of the announcements made last night by our Prime Minister, in relation to the strategy to manage the spread of Covid-19, I wish to first of all assure you that, we are here to assist you as best we can with the unprecedented circumstances we find ourselves in. We appreciate greatly the uncertainty surrounding schools remaining open and the practical issues that may cause leading to a lot of questions without many answers at present, we are working hard to keep on top of the latest advice and any guidance being issued.
In order to make sure that you have access to legal advice should you need it, we are going to make a slight alteration to the way in which you contact us. This is to ensure continuity of service to you as we respond to the latest advice in terms of access to the office and household isolation. We would therefore suggest that for now, we cease to use the usual helpline number and the first point of contact with our service. This number can only be accessed if we are in a Local Authority building logged into a Local Authority phone, as an alternative we ask that:

First contact with helpline is via the helpline email address LegalHelplineCWACCommunityCareAndEducation@cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk. This can be accessed by several people in our department. In the event that one of our officers is unable to work, somebody else will see it and be able to respond to you. We will ensure that all out of office messages on individual email accounts are kept up to date with alternative contacts available, if you do contact your usual lawyer and they are not available this should be clear and you should be redirected. If you wish to cc in maria.stelmach@cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk to your email as a backup, please do.  You may get advice back via email or telephone, whichever you prefer or is the most practical in the scenario you have presented.

If you have an emergency and need urgent legal advice, please contact 07880 781095.

The eCWIP page for legal services does have updated contact details on it for different practice areas and general contact, we will endeavour to keep this updated to reflect accurate points of contact as we go forwards. Also any advice we think all could benefit from we will place on there also in the hope it is of assistance. 
If any of the above presents any issues please do not hesitate to contact Maria Stelmach using the email address or mobile number above, we want to make sure going forwards you get the service in the way you need it so are more than willing to take any feedback or suggestions.
Kindest Regards
Maria Stelmach
Lawyer – Litigation and Corporate
Cheshire West and Chester Council
Tel: 01244-972410
Mobile: 07880 781095
Fax: 01244 972677
Email: maria.stelmach@cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk
Location: 3rd Floor, Nicholas House, 1 Black Friars, Chester, CH1 2NU
Postal Address: CWaC Legal Services, Civic Way, Ellesmere Port, CH65 0BE
DX:  DX 717531 Chester 15
Visit: www.cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk

17 Mar 2020

Legal Services
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