Pro bono is an increasingly important part of legal education and practice that is both challenging and rewarding. Here are details of some of the schemes we have run in Reading.
Legal Advice Centre (LAC)
The LAC provides free, preliminary legal advice to the public on a wide variety of civil issues. Whilst providing support at this centre you will interview a client and produce an interview summary, carefully supervised by our Supervising Solicitor, in order to help you gain interviewing, drafting and file management skills through hands-on experience.
Legal Advice Centre Triage
This experience will see you calling potential clients for the Legal Advice Centre and taking details of their legal problem before considering, with the help of the Supervising Solicitor, whether the Legal Advice Centre can help.
Citizens Advice Bureau
Citizens Advice offers free help and advice to members of the public on a variety of topics. All offices have trained volunteer advisors as well as some volunteer solicitors. The services they offer include legal advice and help with form filling.
You could take part in the following activities:
- Help with a combination of reception duties, observation of client interviews, note-taking, preparing brief case notes and answering phone calls from the public.
- Be trained to prepare case submissions on benefit appeals to the First Tier Tribunal concerning overpayment of benefits and rejection of claims for Disability Living Allowance or Employment Support Allowance.
- Train to be a Gateway Assessor or a Generalist/Specialist Advisor.
Why not spend a day shadowing a local District Judge? This invaluable experience will enable you to gain an insight into civil justice in practice.
Crown Court Marshalling
You can also spend a day shadowing a judge at a local Crown Court, learning skills that you can later put into action.