The Free Speech Union is Hiring

Job Title: Chief Legal Counsel

REPORTS TO: General Secretary
SALARY: £70,000 – £75,000
PURPOSE: The Chief Legal Counsel will be head of the FSU’s Legal Department, providing legal guidance to the FSU and its members. The post-holder will need to be able to appear for the FSU and its members in court when required, e.g. a qualified barrister or a solicitor with rights of audience. He or she will be a member of the FSU’s Senior Management Team and help to shape the overall strategy of the organisation.


  • Providing legal advice to the FSU and its members.
  • Appearing for the FSU and its members in court when required.
  • Doing all necessary preparatory work when the FSU instructs solicitors or barristers to appear on its behalf.
  • Writing legal letters on behalf of the FSU and its members.
  • Negotiating legal agreements on behalf of the FSU and its members.
  • Recruiting and managing a full-time Legal Officer.
  • Keeping abreast of all legal developments relating to free speech in the media and in the academic, political and legal spheres, both criminal and civil.
  • Providing good “customer service” when communicating with FSU members about legal matters, managing expectations sensitively and communicating clearly.
  • Developing and maintaining good relationships with all relevant legal stakeholders.
  • Attending internal meetings and external meetings and events, giving presentations when necessary.
  • Acting as an ambassador for the organisation at all times.


Section: Education and Qualification
Qualified Solicitor or BarristerCV/Certificates
Section: Work experience
At least five years of legal work experience, preferably including experience in a leadership roleCV and interview
Section: Aptitudes, attitudes, knowledge, skills and ability
Commitment to the cause of free speech.Membership of the FSU, Interview
Good knowledge and understanding of civil and criminal legal framework, systems and cases in relation to free speech matters.Interview
Good knowledge and understanding of the political and media landscape in relation to free speech matters.Interview
Good intellectual and analytical ability in order to apply complex political and legal concepts to practical issues.CV and Interview
Politically astute – aware of, and sensitive to, people’s different perspectives.Interview
Self-starter – ability to work on own initiative.CV and Interview
Start-up mindset – flexibility to carry out a wide range of both advanced and basic administrative activities.CV and Interview
Leadership – ability to motivate and manage a team of people.CV and Interview
Communicator – excellent standard of literacy and written communication skills for the purposes of communicating with members and third parties, including the ability to write formal letters.CV and Interview
Advocacy – able to communicate both orally and in writing in a persuasive and convincing manner.CV and Interview
Agreeable – good interpersonal skills with people at all levels.CV and Interview
Coaching – the ability to help others to develop their knowledge and skills.CV and Interview
Homeworking – has premises, equipment and systems to enable productive working from home.Interview

PAY: up to £70–75,000 per year
TIME: 5 days per week (37.5 hours)

HOLIDAY ENTITLEMENT: 20 days per year plus bank holidays.

Applicants should send a CV and introductory letter to . The FSU is actively recruiting for this role and may withdraw it at its discretion. Application deadline is 11th September. Ideally, the successful candidate will start from 1st October, but the start can be delayed if necessary.