Charities providing pro bono opportunities for lawyers
LawWorks is the leading pro bono charity for solicitors in England and Wales. You can volunteer your time to people and community groups who are not eligible for legal aid and cannot afford to pay for a solicitor.
LawWorks is committed to working with solicitors to support, promote and encourage a commitment to pro bono across the profession by:
- supporting firms to develop and maintain pro bono clinics
- running a service which matches community groups with law firms
Corporate and Social Responsibility (CSR) Legal Network
The network connects CSR professionals working within law firms. It:
- has a forum where you can ask confidential questions and share knowledge
- runs surveys
- holds an annual conference
- organises quarterly face-to-face meetings
The network can help with pro bono requests which have not been placed anywhere else.
There is a joining fee for firms and chambers but the network has good membership coverage of city, international and national firms.
For more information, visit the CSR Legal Network website or email the CSR Legal Network.
Lawyers Volunteering for the Arts (LVFA)
LVFA was set up in 2012 by a group of London law firms that wanted to offer pro bono legal support to the arts community. It encourages solicitors to provide free legal advice to low income and not-for-profit arts and cultural organisations and community groups.
Free Representation Unit
The Free Representation Unit (FRU) represents clients at social security and employment tribunals in London and the south east.
Most volunteers are law students, but qualified solicitors are also welcome (and may be waived some of the training requirements if they have relevant experience). Volunteers are supported by FRU staff and take responsibility for case preparation as well as the advocacy in tribunal.
Visit the FRU website
Organisations supporting and providing pro bono services
Access to Justice Foundation
The foundation provides access to justice for vulnerable people. It raises funds for organisations which support those who cannot afford to pay for legal help.
Funds are shared among:
- pro bono organisations
- strategic regional projects
- local advice agencies such as Citizens Advice and law centres
Pro Bono Community
Pro Bono Community launched during National Pro Bono Week 2013 at the Law Society. It prepares law students, trainees and junior lawyers for volunteering at law centres and other advice agencies.
Visit the Pro Bono Community website
Pro Bono Connect
Pro Bono Connect matches solicitors and barristers who want to work collaboratively to provide pro bono services.
If your firm is a member of the Pro Bono Connect scheme, you can ask a barrister at another member firm. They do not have to accept the request, only to consider it. If a request is accepted, the solicitor and barrister work on the pro bono case as a team.
The scheme is currently limited to the following areas of law:
- common law
- public law
- tax cases
For more information visit the Pro Bono Connect website or email our pro bono policy adviser Valerie Robertson.
Young Citizens is the UK's leading provider of public legal information (PLI)) for young people. It helps them to:
- understand the law
- know their rights and responsibilities as citizens
- develop their knowledge of how the legal system works
Young Citizens calls for the legal profession to continue and grow its support for public legal information by providing:
- support for intermediary bodies such as the National Justice Museum and the Association of Citizenship Teaching, to help schools that have no budget for PLE
- a wider range of options for support for different types of legal firms