Election Law

We have built a reputation as one of a handful of ‘go to’ firms in this specialist area of law.

Our work has involved:

– Advising on one of the largest electoral fraud investigations in UK history;
– Successfully defending an MP and his agent from charges of election expenses fraud following the 2015 General Elections;
– A Supreme Court case which determined the definition and scope of election expenses law;
– Acting in election petitions, including the recent petition in the Cotswolds relating to the validity of a decisive ballot paper simply marked “I voted to leave”;
– Providing guidance to MPs and election candidates in relation to false statements and defamation.
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We have acted for people at every level of politics, from cabinet ministers, MPs, members of the House of Lords, Members of the Senedd, Police & Crime Commissioners and councillors from every level of local government.

Our director James Roochove has been involved in politics and campaigning for over 15 years, previously acting as a campaign manager and working in the Welsh Assembly before becoming a lawyer. In addition to dealing with election law issues he advises on a whole range of legal issues affecting those involved in politics – recent work has involved claims under the Equality Act 2010 and successfully striking out claims for libel and slander against the leader of an opposition council group.

The Legal 500 legal directory has previously described him as ‘a young yet wise lawyer, who has taken the time and trouble to fully immerse himself in the market’ and can ‘impressively gauge the balance between what the law says and what politics demands’; he regularly acts for MPs, candidates and agents.

James Roochoves

JAMES ROOCHOVE

What our clients say:
“I cannot be anything but effusive as to my high regard for Mr Roochove. His attention to detail was first class, his ability to create alternative viewpoints and interpretations of, what was, in my case, abstract and little tested areas of law, was outstanding. Additionally he made himself available to me at any time of day, virtually 24/7.”
James is a solicitor and primarily advises political parties, members of parliament, councillors, and activists on a variety of electoral law and reputation management issues. His work include allegations of electoral fraud, election petitions and advising on false and defamatory statements made against political candidates.
James also has a wider litigation experience which includes advising on defamation proceedings and commercial disputes. He also works as a Tutor at the University of Law teaching a range subjects.
Examples of how James has helped clients include:
– (with Nama Zarroug) successfully defended an MP and his election agent against allegations of electoral fraud following the 2015 General election;
– (with Nama Zarroug) advised and represented over 60 clients in one of the largest electoral fraud investigations ever seen in the UK. All clients either had their cases discontinued by the police or the CPS, or were acquitted following trial.
– Successfully struck out a complex set of claims made by a barrister employed by a leading city firm made against various defendants (including a number of councillors) read here;
– Obtained a public apology and compensation for former MP Byron Davies (now Lord Davies of Gower) in relation to a defamatory social media post falsely claiming he was being investigated for electoral fraud, read here; 
– Obtained apologies and damages for Dr Kieran Mullan MP in relation to a defamatory online article published during the 2019 General Election;
– Was part of ex New Order founding member Peter Hook’s legal team, playing a key role in his successful Derivative Claim application against his former bandmates (Peter kindly acknowledged James in his book “Substance – inside New Order”);
– Successfully secured relief from criminal sanctions for an election agent who had made genuine mistakes when completing an expenses return for a high profile MP.

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