Pro bono is an increasingly important part of legal education and practice that is both challenging and rewarding. At The University of Law we have been committed to providing a pro bono service since 2001. Here are details of some of the schemes we run in Nottingham.
Legal Advice Clinic (LAC)
The LAC provides free, preliminary legal advice to the public on a wide variety of housing issues, mainly focusing on Landlord and Tenant issues. Whilst volunteering in the LAC, you will be given the opportunity to interview a client and produce a Letter of Advice. You will be supervised by our Supervising Solicitor, in order to help you gain interviewing, drafting, legal research and file management skills through hands-on experience in dealing with real life legal cases.
Midlands Employment Rights Advice Line (MERAL)
Run in conjunction with local law firms and our Birmingham campus, this initiative is a free telephone advice service for employees with employment problems. You will gain experience in interviewing clients to obtain initial information in respect of the matter and then you will have the opportunity to observe a volunteer lawyer providing legal advice at one of our weekly Advice Clinics.
Talking Legal (formerly Streetlaw)
This Project was established with the support of the Talking Legal Student Society. Talking Legal aims to raise awareness of legal rights and responsibilities within the community by providing engaging workshops and presentations on various legal topics, such as Cyberbullying or Employment Law rights. You would work in a team to produce an interactive workshop on a legal topic, helping you to develop your team work, legal research and presentation skills.
External Volunteering Opportunities
We also work in collaboration with a number of local and national organisations to provide further pro bono opportunities for our students externally;
Citizen’s Advice Witness Support Service
Students volunteer to provide support and give information to witnesses in our local courts. Once trained, you can attend court with the client to support them before, during and after giving evidence at criminal trials.
Employment Tribunal Marshalling
Why not spend time shadowing a local Employment Tribunal Judge? This invaluable experience will enable you to gain an insight into employment law and tribunal practice and will provide you with an opportunity to network with the local judiciary.
National Centre for Domestic Violence (NCDV)
This organisation provides fast, free legal advice and support for victims of domestic violence. In particular it runs an emergency injunction service allowing anybody, regardless of financial circumstances to obtain protection through the civil courts (usually an injunction) within 24 hours. After suitable training you could volunteer with NCDV.
National Justice Museum
The National Justice Museum Education provides learning opportunities for children, young people and disadvantaged groups in heritage sites and sites of legal interest. They use these sites to inspire and provide opportunities to learn about the law, increase legal literacy and raise aspirations and social mobility. You would assist the Learning Manager with groups of young people from various educational establishments and this will take place in a courtroom environment.
The Woodland Trust
As a Woods under Threat Detector, you will be the eyes and ears for finding those planning applications, which threaten precious ancient habitats and for drafting those all-important responses to planning authorities. Your work will support the Trust’s fight against further loss of ancient woodland and veteran trees. This work can be done remotely and within your own time.