Applying for award funding

A message from the Chair:

On 23 March, we announced that we were suspending some Law Society Charity activities from operating as usual. This is due to coronavirus (COVID-19) and the government's advice to organisations.

The Charity is very much alive and well and accepting donations, particularly of unclaimed client account balances. But its day-to-day operation has had to take second place to the day-to-day solicitors’ duty of supporting the rule of law and the legal system during these extraordinary times.

The Trustees will meet as soon as they can to consider the funding applications we've already received. We appreciate that many plans that may have been the basis for applications will have changed considerably since the onset of the virus.

We are unable to accept fresh funding applications at the moment. We'll announce on the website when we start to accept applications again. 

Please bear with us and keep supporting us.

The Trustees would like to say thank you again to the many firms and individuals who have supported, and continue to support, the Law Society Charity in its valuable work for a cause we all believe in so passionately.

John Perry
9 June 2020

Organisations must be registered in England or Wales to apply.

Email your completed application (Word, 108 KB) with your most recent financials and constitutional documents to lawsocietycharity@lawsociety.org.uk. You can also include a completed equal opportunities monitoring form (Word, 53 KB). These must be in Word or PDF format.

We do not accept applications through the post.

Reviewing award applications

Due to the large number of applications we receive, we publish a closing date when we’ve received a reasonable volume of work to be reviewed.

Trustees review applications at quarterly meetings throughout the year. One of the quarterly meetings also includes our AGM.

Applications received after a published closing date will be assessed in the following meeting and you’ll be notified by email. We'll try to let you know the outcome of your application within four weeks of it being reviewed. 

As of 23 March 2020, applications are closed until further notice. Any applications we've already received will be reviewed at our next meeting.

Financial awards are usually a maximum of £5,000.

Criteria for reviewing applications

Trustees will consider:

  • the degree of need demonstrated and how crucial an award is for your organisation based upon your size
  • how many people/how large a geographical area will be served
  • whether other charities or public bodies are active in the same field
  • whether funding will also be required from other sources
  • whether the project would particularly promote the needs of excluded, under-represented or disadvantaged groups
  • whether the organisation has a good track record in running the project or service concerned
  • whether the overriding requirement of public benefit has been met taking account of guidance issued by The Charities Commission 

Where else to find assistance

You can search for other charitable organisations at The Gazette Charity Explorer.

The Diversity Access Scholarship programme, developed by the Charity in 2003 and previously funded by the Charity, is now managed by The Law Society’s Diversity and Inclusion team. Email diversityaccessscheme@lawsociety.org.uk

For legal advice please see The Law Society’s Find a Solicitor service

Solicitors Benevolent Association assists solicitors in financial need.

LawCare helps solicitors with emotional and mental health issues.

LawWorks connects solicitors to people who need legal advice but are not eligible for legal aid.

Trustee requests to applicants

  • You may re-apply to the Charity no earlier than 12 months from your last application, and it must be for a different project or service
  • Decisions by trustees are final and there is no appeal
  • Trustees routinely provide brief feedback on applications, which may be limited in value since applications are effectively competitive
  • We cannot give applicants the opportunity to address the trustees; lobbying of individual trustees and the Company Secretary is discouraged