Our public legal education work
Our public legal education strategy
The Law Society’s public legal education (PLE) strategy aims to improve public understanding of the importance of the rule of law, access to justice and constitutional rights.
We aim to:
- help the public understand how and when they should take legal advice from a qualified regulated solicitor
- inform the public about where legal aid still exists and when they can use it
- improve the public’s perception of solicitors and the justice system through increasing their understanding of the law
Information for the public
We publish advice in the ‘for the public’ pages of our website. Our information for the public covers:
- common legal issues, such as buying a home, getting a divorce and making a will
- finding and using a solicitor, including the role of solicitors and how they can help
- paying for legal services, including getting legal aid
We provide advice on issues where members of the public may need legal help, such as information for people affected by the Grenfell Tower fire.
Find a Solicitor
We direct the public to our Find a Solicitor website, a free online search tool that they can use to find a solicitor in their area.
There are over 600,000 visits to the Find a Solicitor website each month, generating 49,000 enquiries to firms, and nearly 7,000 consumer calls to our helpline.
Solicitor Brand Campaign
We run our Solicitor Brand Campaign each year to publicise the work solicitors do and encourage the public to get legal help when they need it. Our adverts appear on billboards, trains and buses, TV, radio, newspapers and social media.
Campaigning for access to justice
We campaign to improve access to justice for all, regardless of social background or wealth. We raise awareness of the impact of legal aid cuts and court closures.
View our current campaigns:
Local media panels
We’ve set up local media panels to help the public understand the important work solicitors do. Our panel members write regular columns for local newspapers to explain common legal issues and promote solicitors’ expertise.
Supporting our members’ PLE work
We provide guidance for law firms on developing a PLE programme, including case studies and details of organisations you can work with.
We’re a major funder of Young Citizens, a public legal education charity that works in primary and secondary schools to educate and inspire young people.
Its Legal Experts in Schools programme connects law firms and in-house legal teams with local schools that want to educate their students about the law. Legal professionals work with small groups of students over six weeks to increase their knowledge and skills.
Its mock trials are learning experiences that show secondary school students how the judicial system works.
Young Citizens also coordinates interactive half-day student workshops. These are run by volunteer legal professionals and look at an area of the law in detail.
Solicitor General’s PLE Panel
We’re a member of the Solicitor General’s PLE Panel. The panel was set up in 2017 to promote the importance of teaching people about the law and their basic civil and criminal rights.
It meets twice a year and is formed of organisations that are involved in PLE, including the Law Society, the Solicitors Regulation Authority, the Bar Council, CILEx, charities and the Ministry of Justice.
In October 2018 it published its 10-year vision statement for PLE.