New pro bono scheme will assist those facing a number of residential property legal issues including unfair rent increases
Aspiring lawyers at BPP University Law School will help tackle rogue landlords as part of new free advice clinic that launched earlier this month.
The pro-bono initiative will see students — assisted by qualified solicitors — provide face-to-face and written legal advice, to members of the public who are considering taking legal action in relation to a residential property dispute.
Students will be able to assist on a range of legal issues, including rent increases, lease disputes, improvement notices, prohibition orders and will even advise those who have been refused permission to purchase their council owned property.
And BPP’s young legal minds are already in high demand. With six 20 minute advice slots available every Tuesday, the first tranche were quickly snapped up on May 10th by members of the public keen to know the merits of their case. The drop-ins — which are part of wider BPP initiative to provide advice on family and housing law on a pro bono basis — take place at the First-tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) in Fitzrovia, London.
Veronica Barran — who is a deputy regional judge — was “delighted” that the new scheme had been given the green light. Trumpeting the benefits of pro bono work within the housing sector she continued:
Landlord & Tenant and Housing are difficult areas of law and unrepresented parties at this tribunal can struggle to put their case and to provide relevant evidence. Respondent tenants can be fearful of losing their homes. There are few sources of pro bono or affordable help in residential property cases and our case officers are relieved to be able to tell litigants in person that help is available at the BPP University London Legal Advice clinic in our tribunal centre.
Meanwhile, Tony Martin, who will be one of the qualified solicitors supervising the law students, confirmed how many litigants in person struggle with the complexities surrounding housing law and added:
Law students are ideally placed to give advice and BPP University ensures that they are properly supervised and supported.