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Working for the Government Legal Department

We are the government’s principal legal advisers. We provide legal advice on the development, design and implementation of government policies and decisions, and represent the government in court. From roads and rivers, to health and human rights, our work touches on most aspects of public life.

We offer unique and high-profile work

We offer a challenging and exciting career. Whether you are newly qualified, returning to work after a break, or looking to ‘do something different’, the Government Legal Department is a supportive and happy place to work.

We provide legal advice to government departments on matters that are frequently scrutinised in Parliament and the media. Our clients range from departments such as the Home Office, the Department for International Trade to the Department for Health and the Ministry of Defence, to name just a few.

We have 14 client-facing advisory teams who provide legal advice on the development, design and implementation of government policies and decisions, draft secondary legislation and work with Parliamentary Counsel on primary legislation.

Colleagues At Table Talking And Smiling

Our cross-cutting expert service groups for Litigation, Employment and Commercial Law provide specialist legal services to a wide range of government departments and public bodies.

While previous experience or knowledge may be relevant to some of our roles, government work is likely to involve a learning curve to acquire legal skills and knowledge not required in private practice. We will provide support to help you acquire the necessary expertise and have a thriving CPD-accredited in-house training programme.

We also support our people to develop their skills and provide opportunities for employees to move between advisory, litigation, employment and commercial law services during their careers.

Did you know?

Equality matters. 8% of GLD staff are declared disabled and 54% of our Senior Leadership are women.

GLD also relies on professionals from backgrounds including HR, Finance, Business Management and IT.

Last year, GLD helped make 396 Statutory Instruments and Worked on 155 Parliamentary Bills.

“There’s a genuine work-life balance here and support for people with families. I have four children and took a year off with each of them. That hasn’t impeded my career. We respect people’s family commitments. I’m also from a BAME background and have found a real commitment to diversity.” 

Mel Nebhrajani CB

Director General of Employment with Economic Recovery and UK Governance

“What is unique about working at GLD is the guarantee that employees – wherever they work – are involved in advising government on current affairs, making news headlines every day. This opportunity to be involved in our national life and serve the British public makes GLD a very real place to work.”

Keith Grieve

Head of Workforce Strategy, HR

Photo of a GLD building, in the sunshine.

Here’s a taste of what we do

Ever wondered what life is like as a government lawyer? Watch our film to find out more.

A photo Of Jayman. He has short dark hair, a tidy beard, and is wearing a white shirt with a blue tie.

GLD named one of the best employers for race

GLD has been recognised for its leadership on race equality and inclusion in the workplace by Business in the Community’s Best Employers for Race listing.

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