Buying and Selling Nurseries
When you are either purchasing or selling a nursery, the transaction is subject to a number of regulatory requirements that you will need to consider. Whether the premises are included in the sale, or just the business, we can help with expert legal opinion that ensures all aspects are fully inspected.
The acquisition of a nursery also requires OFTSED approval and it’s essential that daily operations remain undisrupted while the purchase is processed. We provide advice on what needs to be considered for both small daycare settings and large nurseries, to ensure the final contract is watertight.
For more information about our healthcare legal services please call us on +44 (0)20 3475 6751 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
What to consider when buying or selling a nursery
There are many laws and regulations, such as the OFSTED requirements, which govern looking after children so if you’re buying or selling a nursery, the process may not be as simple as other types of commercial transactions. This means that as well as carrying out the usual due diligence, you may need to factor in some extra procedures.
Children’s day nurseries in England are regulated by OFSTED (Office for Standards in Education). This body is responsible for inspecting all childcare provisions, and carrying out checks on the premises, staff, activities and resources. Health and safety will also be closely scrutinised, including the ratio of adults to children.
Every nursery must be registered on the OFSTED Early Years Register. If you are taking over a nursery or setting up a new one, you will need to apply to OFSTED to complete their registration process. This is the case even if you have previously operated a nursery or childcare facility.
This process can be very time-consuming and may take up to 26 weeks to complete. If the sale completes before you’re registered, you won’t be able to continue running the nursery.
To prevent such problems from occurring, it’s common for there to be a clause in the contract which stipulates the existing owner will not terminate their OFSTED regulation. There may also be the requirement for there to be a couple of hours of “consultancy” every week until the new owner’s registration is complete.
The new owner will need to provide an indemnity, protecting the seller from any financial penalties or costs.
Tenancy & Landlords
If you are selling or purchasing a nursery which includes freehold premises, you can skip this part. However, if the nursery is operating on premises which is subject to a lease, this will need to be transferred via a licence to assign.
To do this, the lease will need to be reviewed to see if there is a clause about re-assigning to a new tenant. Even if there is, you will normally need the landlord’s permission to do so. The terms will normally state that if a tenancy can be re-assigned, consent should not be “unreasonably withheld”. You should therefore be able to complete the process but this will take additional time to process.
We have expertise in buying and selling nurseries, and the earlier we are involved, the more efficiently we can expedite the process.
YOUR HEALTHCARE LEGAL TEAM
t: +44 020 3475 2729
m: +44 07377 190 406
t: +44 020 3475 2724
m: +44 07931 347 854
We have completed £750m worth of pharmacy, dental, care home and nursery transactions.
WHY CARTER BOND
Unlike many law firms when we say partner or barrister led, we mean partner or barrister led. When clients work with us, they get constant access to the lead on their instruction. Yes, we have a team of solicitors and juniors for some of the groundwork and necessary research required by our clients, but this is when it makes financial sense to the client for us to do this. We provide constant contact at no extra cost as part of our service as most of our lawyers have their own business, so they know first-hand how important having a proactive, responsible and trusted partner on their side can be. And also how to work to a financial budget, and the way that legal decisions impact the wider organisation, which often requires balancing risks and competing interests.
Many ask us ‘what’s different about you?’ and we like to reply, ‘because we go the extra mile’. We see our work as building and maintaining good business relationships rather than just earning fees. How we do this is by keeping in constant contact with our clients and intermediaries. From pre to post instruction we ensure that our clients are informed of all legal issues that may impact their business and therefore lives. That is why we provide daily or weekly updates to ALL of our clients whether there is anything to tell them or not (we don’t charge for this we just see it as part of our service). We like our clients to rest peacefully knowing that when we are instructed, and we say ‘we will take it from here’ they know we mean it.
City quality, outer City fees
The world is changing, and many individuals are realising that lifestyle is as vital to them as is income. We are the lucky ones who can hand pick lawyers who can provide the best quality advice but at outer city costs. Our offices are in North West London which may not be the most salubrious in the market but at the same time this allows us to charge our clients for what they pay for, our advice NOT our office space.
ALL our lawyers have previously worked in large city-based law firms and continue to practise and offer the same high level service they provided to clients in the City but without the pressure and demands often dictated by City law firm. This allows us to be competitive on our fees without compromising our service.
All in all, our clients win, which is the way we like it.
Our knowledge and resources are yours
All our clients benefit from the same high level of care and attention whether the instruction is big or small. At the outset of each matter, we discuss the entire process with our clients, including the costs, potential outcomes and issues associated. This is to ensure clients are fully aware, knowledgeable and are in control always. Supporting and ensuring we provide the highest level of services, we offer our constant contact process with the partner or barrister leading your file, a document log in for matters which are for larger and more complicated instructions and on-going support post transaction should our clients require it. Our aim is not just to get the work done, but to make our clients’ lives easier as we do it, which is why we ensure that our clients have regular access to the resources they need from us.
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“From buying a chemist, selling a chemist, and buying properties, they have always given five star service.”
“Very diligent and responsive.”
“This is a firm that walks with you and holds your hand all through the process. Get an answer to any queries at anytime!”
“Their knowledge about the pharmacy market was profoundly demonstrated.”
“Incredibly well sourced.”
“Great work by Reena and her team to turn around a dental practice purchase in 7 days under challenging circumstances.”
“The team at Carter Bond operate ethically, efficiently and they work around the clock to make your goals, their goals.”
Like any commercial matter, the buying of a business and property can often be daunting task trying to understand and undertake. While your immediate attention will be on the numbers and in particular profitability of the business, there are two common problems that affect and severely delay first-time buyers of a children’s nursery. Ofsted and transfer of the premises.
The best way to prepare for the sale of your business is to be well informed: this will allow you to take the necessary steps to get the highest possible sale price for your business. With this in mind, our experienced solicitors have compiled an overview of the key points to consider when preparing to sell your business.
TUPE is an acronym for the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employees) Regulations, which are designed to protect employees if the business they work for changes ownership or if there is any change in service provisions.