York Law School Clinic aids local community

Posted on 2 April 2012

A free-legal advice service offered by the York Law School Clinic at the University of York has saved local people thousands of pounds.

Since it opened for business in January 2011, the law clinic has recovered or saved clients from the local community over £120,000.

Our team of students brings dedication and professionalism to the role and its success is clear from the amount of money recovered or saved

Richard Grimes

The clinic comprises a team of student advisors, all studying law at the University, offering advice on issues ranging from problems claiming benefits, to setting up a new business to difficulties at home, work or school.

Student advisors interview clients, find out their concerns and look into these. After consulting with professional lawyers, the student advisors then provide written advice to clients informing them of their position and what the client may be able to do.

Recently the service received a commendation for Best New Student Pro Bono Activity at the Attorney-General’s national Pro Bono Awards held at the House of Lords.

Richard Grimes, a qualified solicitor and the University’s Director of Clinical Programmes, said: “Our team of students brings dedication and professionalism to the role and its success is clear from the amount of money recovered or saved. As access to free legal aid becomes more difficult, services such as that offered by the York Law School Clinic will become increasingly important.

“The Clinic focuses on cases where clients cannot afford or cannot otherwise access legal services. In addition to the £120,000 we have saved or recovered for clients, we have also saved our clients at least £50,000 in costs as we do not charge for our services.”

The clinic is based in the York Law School, which was ranked second among all university law schools by the Sunday Times University Guide 2012. 

Anyone from York and the surrounding area is welcome to contact the Clinic for an appointment for free, confidential advice.

Richard Grimes said: “We cannot guarantee to assist in every case but if we can, we will. Where we are unable to do so, we will try to find alternative sources of help for clients.”

For more information or to book an appointment, telephone the York Law School Clinic on 01904 325819 or email law-clinic@york.ac.uk.