New student-led law project comes to Tayside and Perthshire
A new project will fill an access-to-justice gap and educate the public on the law while giving students hands-on legal experience in order to help boost their employability prospects.
The Tayside and Perthshire Law Project (Tayper) is a pro bono organisation due to launch later this year that will be led entirely by students.
It is part of the Casus Omissus family, which includes the award-winning Aberdeen Law Project (ALP) and the recently launched Highlands and Islands Law Project. Students from ALP will initially assist the organisation and will manage cases and liaise with clients on a day-to-day basis, with universities handling subsequent recruitment.
Tayper is being managed by co-chairs Lindsay Murray, an associate at Willkie Farr & Gallagher (UK) LLP and solicitor Lindsay McCormick, a former student director of ALP. Robyn Canning and Jonathan Goodyear, students from ALP are consultants with the organisation, along with Ryan Whelan of Gibson Dunn. Claire Mitchell QC is a patron of the organisation.
Miss Murray told Scottish Legal News: “The project is about providing free legal advice and building bridges in the local community. One important aim is to educate the community about their legal rights and provide students with an opportunity to gain invaluable work experience in an incredibly difficult market.”
Miss Canning added: “We are very excited to be expanding our services across the Tayside & Perthshire area. The expansion of our services will continue to bridge the justice gap and provide legal assistance to those in need. I am thrilled to be leading our student team and have every confidence that the project will go from strength to strength.”
Ms Mitchell told SLN: “I am delighted to be a patron of the Tayside and Perthshire Law Project. At this time in particular, there is an increasing need for legal advice when unfortunately the legal aid system is already under considerable strain.
“There are people in the community who are falling through the safety net legal aid should provide and they can’t get access to justice. This project aims to try to meet that unmet need by assisting the community by offering free legal advice and representation to those who can’t get legal aid.
“The project is also committed to a programme of community outreach initiatives that educate individuals and third sector organisations on the law. That young lawyers and law students give of their own time, unpaid, to make this project work provides me with confidence for the future of social justice in Scotland.”