Law students to the rescue
Nottingham Law School (NLS) is stepping up its support for a national legal charity after the government cut a vital source of funding.
Law students will provide practical and emotional support for people going through civil or family court proceedings without representation as part of an enhanced partnership with Support Through Court.
NLS students will exclusively deliver the charities national online support service and is currently one of small number of UK universities selected to offer a hybrid (in-person and online) service for members of the local community.
Volunteers will be on hand to explain how the court process works, assist with forms and organise paperwork, discuss settling issues, prepare members of the public for their day in court and, if needed, attending court for support afterwards.
NLS, part of Nottingham Trent University, will also offer premises, IT equipment and client meeting rooms. Students will be supported by the charity’s supervisors.
The additional support comes after Support Through Court, previously known as the Personal Support Unit, was hit with a £400,000 shortfall resulting from changes to the way the Ministry of Justice distributes funds.
The Nottingham hybrid service is due to launch in October, with the national online service to follow in December.
Laura Pinkney, head of NLS’s teaching law firm, NLS Legal, said:
“We are proud to partner with Support Through Court to help them to provide such a fantastic and vital service. At Nottingham Law School, we are committed to enriching society by improving access to justice and to providing our law students with outstanding opportunities to undertake real life practical experience. This important partnership embodies those values and will ensure we are supporting the community through hugely challenging times, whilst equipping our law students with the skills they need to be the exceptional legal professionals of the future.”