Many lawyers and legal services have already been grappling with whether it is safe to go back to work during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Some legal firms have remained open as essential services throughout lockdown. Others are now starting to plan how to get back to work safely when lockdown ends.

If you’re wondering what you need to know about getting back to work safely as a law firm, Fantastic Services has gathered some essential information for you.

Coronavirus and law offices – what is being done?

Currently, most legal professionals should be working from home. The only exceptions are those which have been told they are essential, such as some family law specialists.

To prepare for any scale of reopening – whether a skeleton crew to enable access to physical files and answer phones or a staged return to work for the whole office in future – the government’s COVID secure requirements are the place to start. These measures include:

  • Thorough cleaning and COVID assessment before reopening.
  • Planning how to maintain social distancing measures within the office at all times.
  • Improving ventilation, handwashing facilities and avoiding touch-based security systems.
  • In open-plan offices, considering installing screens and always cleaning hotdesks.
  • Enough space between workers and maintaining social distancing.
  • Regular office cleaning – perhaps at the end of each working day.
  • Cleaning and disinfecting highly touched surfaces

What does the government say?

Current government rules are:

  1. If you’re in England, “if you can work from home, then please do so.
  2. If you’re in Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland, “stay at home.”

You can check out the full official guidelines, covering things like visiting clients, staggering arrival times and who should go to work at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19/offices-and-contact-centres

What do lawyers and partners say?

Legal professionals who are concerned about returning to the workplace after lockdown have expressed safety concerns which can be summed up as:

  • Has there been a careful assessment of the risks?
  • Has the office been cleaned professionally and disinfected?
  • Has the office been reorganised to allow for social distancing at all times?

Partners and other senior figures at many law firms have made sure to maintain a dialogue with other members of their team open to reassure them their concerns are being addressed.

What do the experts say?

Members of the government’s SAGE advisory group have said that even the planned reopening of some businesses in June is probably too soon.

All of the experts agree – if you can work from home, you should work from home.

Legal firms – back to work preparation

But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be prepared. For most law firms, getting back to work safely after lockdown means two things:

Firstly, it means addressing the concerns of your staff. Second, it means clearly signposting to your clients that it is safe to visit your offices.

Fantastic Services has developed specific services to help you do exactly that:

COVID-19 antiviral cleaning

Protect yourself, your staff and your clients. Start from a viral ground-zero. This service is designed to clean and disinfect wide spaces and offices where staff stay for prolonged periods of time. Here are the important details.

  • Using BS EN 1276 certified non-toxic virucidal solutions.
  • Spreading microscopic droplets with professional machines.
  • Disinfecting all surfaces in minutes and eliminating germs.
  • Kills 99.999% of germs, thus minimising the risk of viral infection.
  • Carried out by experienced technicians in full protective gear. 

Book Antiviral Cleaning for your office

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COVID-19 back to work preparation

Get your office ready to comply with all social distancing rules.

  • Clear space for social distancing measures.
  • Removal and storage of excess furniture.
  • Professionals to install screens and other protections.
  • Maintain distance between work stations.

Image source: Depositphotos/ freedomtumz

Posted in Company Stories, Life Under Lockdown

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