Legal Advice Clinic pilot launched at Leeds Beckett
The Leeds Law School is currently in the process of setting up a Legal Advice Clinic which will formally launch later this year. The pilot, which took place on Tuesday 19 April, saw Leeds Beckett staff and students participate in a one-day event, as they were given appointments to discuss legal concerns relating to family matters.
Two local specialist solicitors offered their services for the afternoon and held consultations with five selected clients, witnessed by a total of 12 final-year students who worked in small groups shadowing the solicitors. The students were able to experience a real advice session first hand, summarising the advice given by the solicitors in a letter to be sent to the clients. A training session in the morning was given by Richard Grimes, former Director of Clinical Programmes at York Law School.
Speaking about the success of the pilot, Deveral Capps, Head of Leeds Law School at Leeds Beckett, said: “I am delighted that Leeds Law School’s Law Clinic opened its doors on Tuesday 19 April. Involving law students in providing legal advice has a significant role in legal education and helps students put into practice some of what they have learned in their studies; I look forward to building the clinic fully into our curriculum.
“I would like to say a special thank you to Laura Clapton (Consilia Legal) and Norman Taylor (Jones Myers) for giving up their time to assist with our clinic, to Richard Grimes, former Professor of Clinical Legal Education at the University of York, and most importantly to Sara Boulton for leading the Law Clinic project. Thanks must also go to Jenny McCloy and Annie Johnson for their research into pro-bono last year.”
Speaking about the pilot, Leeds Law School student, Emily Lamb, said: “It was a thoroughly enjoyable experience and so useful to have a real client interview and prepare for life in a firm.”
The launch of the Legal Advice Clinic will see Leeds Law School students working with local specialist solicitors to provide free, confidential advice, based at Leeds Beckett. This service will ultimately be offered on a pro bono basis to Leeds residents who are in need of legal advice.