The Connected Places Award: Huddersfield Business School, University of Huddersfield

Award Type: 

Longlisted for a Business in the Community Responsible Business Award

Action and Impact
In early 2012, it became evident that the Legal Aid and Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 would be passed, meaning that a significant amount of civil legal aid provision would be withdrawn. As a result, many people were left without the means to access legal assistance, resulting in their exclusion from the legal process with the law disproportionately impacting upon people who may face eviction from their homes or losing contact with their children.

That was the reason the University of Huddersfield, within the purview of the Huddersfield Business School, launched the Legal Advice Clinic (LAC). The LAC uses a co-operative approach to bring together the public, private and charitable sectors to assist those without access to legal advice or help, providing free legal assistance to the most disadvantaged and vulnerable members of society.

Since 2013/14, the clinic has helped 1,366 clients, representing an average yearly figure of more than 300 clients.

Students, supervisors and private solicitors provide their time free of charge. The value to the local community of the work undertaken by them, if calculated at local county court rates for paralegals and solicitors, amounts to an impressive £538,385.50.