Pro bono opportunity with Kent Legal Clinic

Kent Legal Clinic is a student law clinic based at the University of Kent, providing pro bono legal advice and representation services to individuals and small unfunded community groups based in the county of Kent. Our aims are to enhance the legal education of our students by involving them in the provision of legal services to clients and to make a contribution to access to justice.

The university employs seven solicitors/supervising lawyers to supervise the casework of the clinic. We have in-house expertise in asylum and immigration law, employment and discrimination law, housing law, family law, social welfare law, and in relation to questions of public rights of access to land (village greens, public rights of way and related planning questions). We also take on a small number of civil claims arising in the fields of contract or tort law.

Initial advice sessions generally take place in the evenings from Monday to Thursday, but appointments can be timetabled to the volunteer’s convenience.

What are you looking for volunteers to help with?

We are looking for legally qualified volunteers (barristers, solicitors, legal executives) who would like to join our panel of volunteer lawyers.

We host (initial) legal advice sessions attended by clients and typically 3 or 4 student observers during term time (October to December and January to early April). We can assist with most areas of social welfare law, including housing, property, employment and discrimination, family law, immigration and asylum, as well as civil claims in tort, contract or unjust enrichment, contentious wills and probate, and public law.

Sometimes ‘spin off issues’ occur from our main casework where we could use additional expertise. For example, we may need help on insolvency procedures where we are acting for a group of clients who are presenting claims in the Employment Tribunal against an insolvent employer, or we may seek to negotiate a settlement which requires the skills of a transactional lawyer.

What will the time commitment be?

We are looking for a commitment of 6 or more hours a year.

We seek a commitment from interested volunteers to be added to the rota for one advice session in your field of expertise in the autumn term (October - mid December) and one in the spring term (mid Jan - early April).

Volunteers will advise 3 or 4 clients in a two-hour session and will be provided with a summary of the issue at hand and any key documents obtained in advance.

What will volunteers get out of this?

Volunteers will get an opportunity to advise clients (and incidentally educating the next generation of lawyers) in your area of expertise without being bogged down in too much administration. We value the efforts of pro bono lawyers who can commit to making a modest hourly contribution each year, but cannot make a commitment to a weekly or bi-weekly involvement in pro bono.

Subject to Covid-19 restrictions and volunteer’s geographical location, we can organise your advice sessions at the University campus or on Zoom.

We have well established systems for administration and involving student observers in the case.

We hope to offer volunteer lawyers a way of volunteering without you having to put in place an administrative structure.

Person specification - what type of volunteers are you looking for?

We are looking for qualified barristers, solicitors or Fellows of the Institute of Legal Executives (with current practising certificate) with expertise of one year or more in one or more areas of law specified above.

What email address should enquiries and applications be sent to?

e.sherratt@kent.ac.uk

Application process - is there any information you would like applicants to provide?

Please send your CV to the above-mentioned email address.

We ask volunteers to briefly outline their professional qualifications, whether they have a current practising certificate, which firm or chambers they currently work with, the main areas of law in which they hold professional expertise and the type of cases they feel able to make a contribution to within the remits of the clinic.

Please indicate the level of commitment you would feel comfortable making - and whether you would prefer to provide advice face to face via Zoom.

If there are any further queries before making a commitment, please get in touch.

Is there a deadline for applications or is this an ongoing opportunity?

Ongoing

Details

Opportunity location:
Online, or at the University of Kent campus
United Kingdom
GB
Region:
South East
Opportunity type:
Closing date:
Saturday, April 30, 2022