Advocate's Pro Bono Opportunities for Qualified Barristers
In House Pro Bono Stories
We sat down with Rebecca Wilkie, CEO of Advocate, to learn about the pro bono opportunities they offer qualified barristers.
Tell us about your organisation and projects
Advocate gives qualified barristers the opportunity to provide discrete pro bono pieces of advice, drafting or representation to people who cannot afford legal help and are ineligible for legal aid.
Advocate operates nationally in all areas of law and before all courts and tribunals, from the Employment Tribunal to the Supreme Court and everything in between.
There are multiple ways to help, including:
Signing up to be a panel member. This is available to anyone from their second six onwards, whether in chambers or working in a corporate setting. We ask people to commit to providing three days a year and all requests for help are standalone and have been reviewed by a senior barrister. It is up to the panel member whether to take on a piece of advice or not, by registering their interest. The parameters of the work are very clear and a barrister can either help within their own practice area or use the experience to try something new.
Becoming a reviewer. This is open to more senior barristers of over seven years call. Every month, a reviewer looks over requests for assistance that have been filtered by Advocate's caseworkers, to check that they meet specific criteria. We provide training and support and people work within their area of expertise.
Becoming a mentor. Many of our panel members are young barristers looking for experience, so we have a scheme in which a junior barrister can request guidance from a more senior member of the profession, either related to a specific piece of work, or where they are taking on something outside their expertise.
How can lawyers get involved in what you do?
Barristers sign up to be panel members or mentors by visiting our website. Reviewers are recruited periodically and the best way is to register your interest with us by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information about how employed barristers can get involved please read the Guide to Pro Bono for the Employed Bar. The Guide explains how employed barristers with practicing certificates can undertake pro bono, and the key practical factors to consider when doing so. The guide was produced in partnership with the Bar Council, the Bar Association for Commercial, Finance & Industry, the Free Representation Unit, the In House Pro Bono Group, the Government Legal Department and Advocate.
Is there a fee involved?
There is no fee for either the people that we help or the barristers who sign up. Advocate is a charity both set up and supported by members of the Bar.
Is there a contact person/mailbox people can reach out to for more information?
For further information, please contact email@example.com.