Dr. Patrick Ford is a Lecturer in Law and member of the School's Charity Law Research Unit. He is a solicitor, Writer to the Signet and member of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners and was in private practice for fifteen years, specialising in trust law and tax planning. He joined the School in 1994 to pursue doctoral research in charity law, submitting a thesis entitled Scottish Public Trusts and Public Associations: Definition, Form and Reform. He has been teaching at the School since 1995, and holds a Certificate of Teaching in Higher Education.
As a member of the Charity Law Research Unit he has contributed to proposals for the reform of charity and trust law in Scotland. He served on the Scottish Executive's Bill Reference Group for the Charities and Trustee Investment (Scotland) Act 2005 and on the Scottish Government’s working group for the Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation.
Undergraduate:- Law and Society; Justice, Law & Human Rights; Human Rights
Postgraduate:- Understanding Human Rights
Patrick Ford offers postgraduate supervision in the fields of trust and charity law, legal theory and human rights. He is director of the School’s LLM in Human Rights.
Recent research and publications have focused on charity law reform in Scotland, examining reform proposals and enacted legislation in the light of non-profit law in other jurisdictions, both Anglo-American and Civilian. Ongoing research will monitor implementation of the new charities legislation in Scotland and compare the impact of parallel reforms in England and Wales and elsewhere, and will also look more broadly at the interplay between voluntary action and state regulation in the context of civil society. Recent and current projects involve close collaboration with Stuart Cross of the School's Charity Law Research Unit.
Third Sector Regulation in Post-devolution Scotland: Kilting the Charity Cuckoo. in SD Phillips & S Rathgeb Smith (eds), Governance and Regulation of the Third Sector: International Perspectives . Routledge Studies in the Management of Voluntary and Non-profit Organisations, Routledge, Abingdon, pp. 69-98.
Charities: Reissue. in NR Whitty (ed.), The Laws of Scotland : Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia . vol. 2, Lexis Nexis/Law Society of Scotland, Edinburgh, pp. 1-184 (Ford, 3-20, 53-97, 125-130, 156-184 .
'Cross-Border Issues in the Regulation of Charities: Experiences from the UK and Ireland' International Journal of Not-for-Profit Law , vol 11, no. 3, pp. 5-41 (Ford 13-18, 30-36).
'A statute of unintended consequences? The impact of the Charities and Trustee Investment (Scotland) Act 2005 on non-Scottish charities operating in Scotland' Northern Ireland Legal Quarterly, vol 59, no. 2, pp. 201-222.
'The Charities and Trustee Investment (Scotland) Act 2005: a stakeholder assessment' Juridical Review: the Law Journal of the Scottish Universities, no. 3, pp. 179-219.
'Supervising charities: a Scottish-civilian alternative' Edinburgh Law Review, vol 10, no. 3, pp. 352-385. DOI:
Charities and Trustee Investment (Scotland) Act 2005. W. Green, Edinburgh.
'The Charities and Trustee Investment (Scotland) Bill: falling between two stools?' King's College Law Journal, vol 16, no. 1, pp. 1-28.
'The Scottish charity test: do we really need it?' Edinburgh Law Review, vol 8, no. 3, pp. 408-414. DOI:
'Common investment funds: why are Scottish charities excluded?' Scottish Law & Practice Quarterly, vol 5, no. 3, pp. 269-288.
Public benefit versus charity: a Scottish perspective. in C Mitchell & SR Moody (eds), The foundations of charity. Hart Publishing, pp. 205-248.
Taxation. in CR Barker, PJ Ford, SR Moody & RC Elliot (eds), Charity law in Scotland. W. Green, pp. 149-175.
Charitable trusts. in CR Barker, PJ Ford, SR Moody & RC Elliot (eds), Charity law in Scotland. W. Green, pp. 43-83.
Regulatory powers under the 1990 Act. in CR Barker, PJ Ford, SR Moody & RC Elliot (eds), Charity law in Scotland. W. Green, pp. 102-121.
Charity law in Scotland. W. Green, Edinburgh.