Nearly £1 million distributed last year
A charity offering financial support to solicitors and their dependents in times of need or crisis has seen a spike in the number of requests for assistance.
The Solicitors’ Charity’s annual ‘Big Report‘ highlights a 50% increase in the number of legal professionals seeking financial support from them over the course of 2022.
The Solicitors’ Charity, the operating name of the Solicitors Benevolent Association, provides financial, emotional and practical support to solicitors experiencing financial difficulties. Last year it funded access to emotional wellbeing or mental health support for 284 solicitors.
The number of new clients experiencing multiple health conditions increased by 50% and cases where clients had mental health issues went up by 60% compared to the previous year.
The charity distributed £962,229 (down slightly on the previous year’s figure £1.02 million) to solicitors and their dependents in crisis across England and Wales, with a further £25,316 in secured loans. The money was awarded as a mix of one-off financial awards for necessities and living allowances.
The Solicitors’ Charity CEO Nick Gallagher, said: “I am delighted that this year’s Big Report has shone a spotlight on the positive impact we have made in 2022. to an increased number of legal professionals needing support in times of hardship.”
A London-based property conveyancer who contacted the charity after becoming unemployed, in debt and homeless, explained the impact impact:
“The financial support and accommodation provided by The Solicitors’ Charity really helped me get back on my feet. The best thing now is being debt-free, having a roof over my head and a warm room. If the charity hadn’t been there for me, I don’t know what would have happened. They’ve been massively helpful and a real lifesaver.”
Legal Cheek previously reported on a number of big law firms providing one-off payments to their trainees and support staff to assist them during the cost-of-living crisis.