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These reports present the findings of the 2019 survey of the legal needs of individuals in England and Wales. The survey was jointly commissioned by, and undertaken on behalf of, the Law Society and the Legal Services Board by YouGov plc.
The work represents the biggest legal needs survey ever run in England and Wales, based on data collected online between February and March 2019 from 28,663 people. This sample is broadly representative of the population of England and Wales and covers 34 different legal issues.
It’s the first study in this jurisdiction to use OECD guidance on how to develop legal needs surveys. It includes measures of legal capability to profile the population by their experience and perceptions of the legal system.
Our objectives with this work were to:
When looking at data at the total population level, for example, incidence of legal issues and attitudes towards the legal system, inferences can be made that the views of the sample collected here represent the views of the wider population.
However, it’s also important to acknowledge potential limitations. Due to the research having been conducted online, it’s possible that the incidence of certain legal issues (for example, having a home repossessed) could be understated as a result of limitations to internet access.
Where possible, the authors conducted comparative analysis with official statistics and have a good degree of confidence in the reliability of the online method for accurately reflecting the experiences of the overall population.