LDA Legal Consultancy

Meeting: 
MQT on 2009-11-18
Session date: 
November 18, 2009
Reference: 
2009/3438
Question By: 
Len Duvall OBE
Organisation: 
Labour Group
Asked Of: 
The Mayor

Question

Why did the LDA's legal department depend upon outside legal firms (DLA Piper & Eversheds) to carry out due diligence work on their behalf relating to the sufficiency of the budget for Olympic Park land acquisition and how much did this work cost the LDA?

Answer

Answer for LDA Legal Consultancy

Answer for LDA Legal Consultancy

Answered By: 
The Mayor

The LDA's legal team was aware of the complexity of the land acquisition process and associated commercial transactions which had taken place over a period of seven years on the Olympic Park. The LDA wished to provide independent, open and full disclosure of this information to the Olympic Park Legacy Company (OPLC).

From the outset, the legal and financial teams worked together to shape a vendor due diligence process that would deliver the commercial, technical, legal and financial information that the OPLC would need ahead of any transfer of land from the LDA to the OPLC. This due diligence work went beyond determining the sufficiency of the budget for Olympic Park land acquisition; it covered all aspects of the land assembly and the related commercial transactions on the Olympic Park.

The LDA had procured a panel of external law firms to advise on these transactions over the previous seven year period and so it was an effective and efficient use of resources to work with these external law firms on the due diligence. The legal and finance teams of the LDA commissioned the work from their external advisers (financial and legal) on the due diligence and assisted and monitored their work throughout.

Expenditure on the legal portion of the vendor due diligence was £0.23m, which represents less than 1% of the LDA's Olympic budget in 2009/10.