Small firms

Levelling up reliant on vibrant legal services sector

The government will struggle to achieve its levelling up mission without a properly funded justice system, the Law Society of England and Wales warned today.

The legal services sector plays a central role in supporting the private sector across the regions of the UK by providing the vital legal advice that businesses small and large need on a day-to-day basis.

“Legal services are the hidden wiring that makes local economies tick, and the key to unlocking the potential of businesses in all parts of the country,” said Law Society president I. Stephanie Boyce.

“As a sector that employs 1% of the UK workforce, contributes £60 billion to the economy and provides services on which business in all sectors rely, legal services have an integral role in making levelling up a success.*

“Legal services provide good quality, professional jobs to local areas, allowing people to build rewarding careers in the places they grew up.

“A successful levelling-up strategy should seek to leverage the power of the legal services sector to drive growth, by investing in the infrastructure our sector relies on – most notably the courts.

“Courts not only provide a space for legal resolution, they also act as hubs of legal activity, drawing law firms to the area, bringing with them jobs and investment.

“We are pleased the government is supporting improved broadband as this is essential to services such as online court processes and remote hearings, supporting modern dispute resolution for local communities.

“The government can also unlock the potential of small and medium-sized firms that form the bedrock of local economies by funding a grant scheme for the adoption of productivity-boosting LawTech.

“Legal services provide vital assistance to ordinary people facing troublesome issues across the country, yet large swathes of the country do not have a single housing legal aid provider.

“Essential funding for the sector can help legal services play an even larger role in levelling up.”

Notes to editors

*Contribution of the UK legal services sector to the UK economy report

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About the Law Society

The Law Society is the independent professional body that works globally to support and represent solicitors, promoting the highest professional standards, the public interest and the rule of law.

Press office contact: Ruth Murphy | 020 8049 3879

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