Ealing Law Centre (London) - Justice First Fellowship Trainee Solicitor

Job Title: Trainee Solicitor

Reports to: Supervising Solicitor

Location: Ealing

Grade/Salary: £24,000

Hours: Monday to Friday, 9.30 - 5.30 (35 hours)

Deadline: 5pm on Monday 14 September 2020

 

Ealing Law Centre is an award winning and highly respected law centre, providing specialist legal advice and representation to our local community. We have built a strong reputation for innovation in our services. In addition to legal aid contracts in housing and immigration, we run projects at the local Foodbank, provide a Crisis Navigator service at Brentford County Court and a holistic service to clients who have overlapping housing and welfare benefits issues, thanks to grant funding from City Bridge Trust. We have been awarded a grant through the Legal Education Foundation and are looking to appoint a Justice First Fellow /Trainee Solicitor.

 

Organisation Detail

We are social justice lawyers fighting for the rights of our clients, through casework and by making sure their voices are heard in policy development. We are keen to make sure that we provide access to justice for our clients beyond the confines of the current legal aid contract.

This post is open to an LPC graduate and will suit a person who is committed to social welfare law. The role would be suitable for a person who has a particular interest in the addressing poverty, suffering and distress amongst the most marginalised members of our society.

The candidate will need excellent communication skills and have the ability to thrive as part of a small team. The role will involve training with our Housing, Immigration and Welfare Rights teams. We are soon be moving to be based in a local community library which will be an exciting new phase in the Law Centres’ development which will see us based right at the heart of the community.

For further information, visit our website.

Any questions regarding this organisation or the position should be directed to info@ealinglaw.org.uk

 

Job Description

Purpose of Job

Under supervision, take responsibility for the provision of legal advice and representation regarding housing and immigration law and practice and related welfare law.

To be responsible for the delivery of advice, casework, support and representation for clients from the London Borough of Ealing and neighbouring boroughs.

To work in partnership with community venues, advice agencies and other agencies to ensure the needs of local people are met and that social policy work is co-ordinated to prevent problems occurring wherever possible.

Responsibilities

  1. To offer advice and representation in housing and immigration matters.
  2. To take on associated casework, to make applications for public funding as required.
  3. To provide advice on our Housing Advice line. 
  4. To provide representation at the Housing Possession Court Duty Schemes.
  5. To represent clients at the County Court as required.
  6. To liaise with landlord’s representatives, solicitors, Home Office, Immigration service and other agencies and groups as required.
  7. To interview and advise clients regarding housing and immigration law and practice. 
  8. To undertake outreach work, including liaising with local communities, delivering talks and presentations to groups, and visiting other groups and centres as appropriate. Work from various locations as reasonably required by the Board.
  9. To keep up-to-date at all time with changes in housing law by reading, attending training events and using computer for reference purposes.
  10. To complete any other records in connection with casework in order to meet Law Centre requirements, maintain statistics and update client files, using manual or computerised systems as appropriate and as required by the organisation.
  11. To prepare reports on own work for the information of the Trustee Board, funders and other stakeholders, as required.
  12. To carry out a share of administrative tasks including those detailed in the Law Centre`s Quality Manual.
  13. To undertake any other duties as may be reasonably required by the Board.
  14. To ensure that their work conforms to SRA, SQM and the LAA Quality Assurance standards and other Ealing Law Centre approved policies and procedures.
  15. To work within the spirit of our Equal Opportunities Policy at all times.
  16. To Take due care of their own Health and Safety and that of others in their working environment.

 

Person Specification

Essential (E) or Desirable (D)

1. Undergraduate degree at 2:1 or above; to have successfully completed the Legal Practice Course by the commencement of the training contract. E
2. Good understanding of social welfare law and experience of working in the areas of housing, immigration and asylum, and/or welfare benefits. E
3. Understanding of the issues affecting low income communities as well as the needs of specific client groups D
4. An understanding of legal aid and the impact of cuts to legal aid on access to justice. D
5. An understanding of and commitment to equal opportunities issues and its relevance to legal advice. E
6. Ability to communicate effectively with the law centre`s client group. E
7. Excellent communication skills (written, spoken and telephone) E
8. Ability to work under pressure and meet deadlines. E
9. Ability to work as part of a team. E
10. Ability to use own initiative. E
11. Ability to speak another language relevant to our client base D
12. Excellent IT skills D

 

Applications are through the Justice First Fellowship website here.

Eligibility

  1. The applicant must satisfy the appropriate entry condition for their type of training placement, i.e:
    • Training Contract (England & Wales) – passed (or expected to pass by 31st October(*1)) the Legal Practice Course (LPC)
    • Training Contract (Scotland) – passed (or expected to pass by 31st October(*1)) the Diploma in Legal Practice/Diploma in Professional Legal Practice (DLP)
    • Training Contract (Northern Ireland) – graduated with a recognised law degree and be eligible to apply for September (of the following year) admission to the Solicitors apprenticeship scheme at the Institute of Professional Legal Studies (Queen’s University Belfast)

Note: any or all of these types of training placement may be available in any given year.

  1. The applicant must have the right to work in the UK and be willing and able to commit to serving a two-year term as a Fellow commencing in the January (April for Northern Ireland Training Contracts) following their application.
  2. The applicant must have a demonstrated commitment to social welfare law. We are particularly interested in students who wish to effect change in the legal community, such as members of public interest and/or pro bono organisations on campus and those who have dedicated time to serving low-income or less privileged communities either during or prior to law school.
  3. Applicants may only apply for a position at one Host Organisation in any year.

Please complete the online application form with your contact information and responses to each question. Once completed and submitted your application will be acknowledged with an automatic receipt to your email address.

(*1) Please note that if you are shortlisted by your chosen Host, but cannot confirm that you have passed the LPC or DLP by 31st October you will not be allowed to attend for interview.

 

Application Timeline

The following lists the dates in the application process for 2020:

Event

Training Contracts

2020 Opportunities posted

May 2020

Applications open

17th August 2020

Applications close

14th September 2020

Applicants notified of Initial Selection

14th October 2020

Interview period

November/December 2020

Training Placements commence

January 2021 (*2)

(*2) April 2021 for Northern Irish positions