How lawyers can help your community

Lawyers can help your community with a wide range of legal issues that may arise. Personally, you could need the services of lawyers to help with a dispute you may be involved in with your landlord. Or perhaps your Local Authority has sent you a summons you that you believe is unfair or inaccurate.

Lawyers can represent you to ensure you are treated fairly and have professional legal representation.

What is community law?

Community law generally refers to a range of areas of law closely connected to community care, including:

  • Access to public services
  • Public law
  • Other issues important to the community

A lawyer specialising in community law may deal with issues such as:

  • Housing
  • Immigration and asylum
  • Welfare benefit
  • Community care issues

For example, community care law concerns helping people who use or need access to health or social services, including users, carers and family members. Lawyers may be able to help you with securing a care plan between you and your health professional and/or social services to help you manage your health and welfare.

If you are having problems with your welfare benefits or housing, a lawyer specialising in community issues may be able to deal with the relevant authority on your behalf. For example, they may be able to take any appeal avenues available to you to have a decision the authority has made reviewed.

They can also look at other public law avenues for addressing the decisions and services of government authorities.

If you have an issue as a member of your local community, a lawyer may be able to assist you. Alternatively, if you cannot afford the service of a private solicitor, you may be able to get some assistance from your local Citizens Advice Bureau or Community Legal Centre in your local community.

A lawyer or legal adviser from one of these services may be able to help you depending upon the type of issue that you have and how complex it is. Alternatively, if you need a solicitor to take on a case on your behalf, you may be able to get legal aid, in which the government will fund your legal support, wholly or partly.

If you are not eligible for legal aid you will need to instruct a solicitor yourself, which is where Contact Law can help you.

Using a lawyer

On a wider scale, your community may also need the help, advice and support of a lawyer. If land near your home is going to be built on, lawyers can act for you and your community if you believe there is a legal reason to fight the new development.

Or perhaps your Local Authority has made changes to the services they provide that you believe is unfair or illegal under current laws and regulations. Having lawyers to help your community can be a great advantage to your case.

Often, communities will shy away from using the law, as they believe they can’t afford to use legal services. You may be able to obtain financial support for a personal case using the Legal Aid scheme. Or your community may have lawyers in your area that do pro bono work which is usually completely free of charge.

Contact Law can put you in touch with lawyers in your local community. They will not only have the knowledge and skills you and your community needs, but they may also have a deeper understanding of your case, as they are local members of your community.

For more information on the legal aid service, see our page on the Community Legal Service.

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Important information

For [selected AoL] law, solicitors will charge a minimum fee of £250 to provide an initial consultation and written opinion on your case. We have a number of recommended law firms in our network who could provide this service to you at the most competitive price. If you would like to proceed, click ‘Paid advice’ below and one of our advisors will call you on a free-of-charge basis to discuss this further with you.