The School of Law at Queen Mary University of London is in the running for a top national award for its voluntary work with communities, charities and businesses in east London.
The LawWorks and Attorney General Student Pro Bono Award 2014 has shortlisted the Legal Advice Centre (LAC) at Queen Mary for Best Pro Bono Contribution by a Law School.
Since 2006, the LAC has been supporting students to work alongside leading solicitors to provide legal advice to individuals and organisations that would otherwise be unable to afford it.
Clients are advised on the strength of their case, and provided with an understanding of the legal issues and processes involved if they proceed.
The LAC offers sessions on seven specialist issues including family and company law and most recently support for those who serve or served in the armed forces.
With the LAC, students advisers have the opportunity to apply their legal knowledge in a practical context, including interviewing clients and researching their case.
They also compete for one of the many work placements and mentoring opportunities the LAC offers with top City firms, including Reed Smith, Mischon de Reya and Field Fisher Waterhouse.
The Legal Advice Centre has won, or been nominated for, several awards in the last eight years, most notably in the Attorney General Student Pro Bono Awards, winning Best New Pro Bono Project 2008 and Best Team of Students 2010.
The School of Law at Queen Mary has long-standing pro bono ethos, and in addition to the LAC, has a student Pro Bono Society and a new QLegal service offering free advice to fledgling digital technology companies in ‘Tech City’, east London.
“The award is the highest form of national recognition open to UK academic and vocational institutions; we are honored to be considered for it,” said Julie Pinborough, LAC director and founder.
“It’s an acknowledgment of the outstanding community legal work we undertake in the Legal Advice Centre and is something we are hugely proud of.”
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