NCLS is a limited company (Reg. No 3524607) and registered charity (Reg. No 1069066) originally established in 1980.
Our purpose is to identify unmet legal need in Norfolk and to work with partner agencies to provide free services to meet that need. We aim to provide access to justice and equality and particularly target our services at disadvantaged & vulnerable groups e.g. offenders, migrant workers, people with mental health issues and physical disabilities.
Our current services include –
twice weekly free legal advice drop in service at our Norwich office – employment, family & general advice; also at Cromer and Great Yarmouth
debt advice for offenders and other vulnerable clients
welfare benefit appeals and representation at Tribunal
advice for victims of domestic abuse
advice on residency status & entitlement for EEA Nationals as well as support for welfare benefit appeals;
discrimination advice and representation
rent arrears mediation for City Council housing tenants
family court support for private child contact matters
NCLS is the lead agency for the Norfolk Community Advice Network (NCAN), a network of voluntary agencies, statutory authorities and private solicitors.
We have 19 members of staff and 130 volunteers including 63 solicitors who advise clients on our behalf as well as 50 law students, mainly from the University of East Anglia, who support the delivery of all our services and represent clients at Welfare Benefit Tribunals.
We are delighted to have been awarded a second Justice First Fellowship by the Legal Education Foundation. The Trainee Solicitor will undertake a range of placements in house, where they will be supervised by NCLS qualified advisers and volunteer solicitors and undertake advice, casework and representation in areas of law including debt, employment, family, general, immigration and welfare benefits. These will be supplemented by short term secondments to both the Norwich Shelter office to gain experience of housing law as well as secondments to private practice to ensure full compliance with the training requirements of the Solicitors Regulation Authority.
The Trainee will also spend an average of one day a week at the NCLS office developing a specific project aimed at improving access to justice.
Any questions regarding this organisation or the position should be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org
This is a two year Trainee Solicitor post involving in house training under the supervision of both experienced advisers and qualified solicitors in areas of social welfare law including debt, employment, family, housing, immigration and welfare benefits, supplemented by short term private practice secondments. The role includes the delivery of an Access to Justice Project
The Trainee Solicitor will -
be supported and supervised by the NCLS Debt Advice Manager, Migrant Worker Advice Manager and Welfare Benefits Manager as applicable, as well as individual employment, family and other solicitors who advise NCLS clients on a pro bono basis
be supervised and supported by the Solicitor member of the NCLS Board who has been designated as the Training Principal.
be line managed by the Advice and Volunteer Manager.
also be supervised by the designated supervisor within the private solicitor practices to which they will be seconded as part of their training programme.
subject to the approval of the Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner (OISC), undertake a formal immigration advice training programme as directed by the Migrant Worker Manager (if it is decided to pursue training in this subject area).
(N.B. these will vary depending upon in which areas of law training is to be undertaken)
Provide advice, casework and representation for NCLS clients under the supervision of NCLS advisers or Pro Bono Solicitors
Draft welfare benefit appeal submissions and represent appellants at Tribunal
Provide support to family clients as part of the NCLS Family Court Support Service.
Provide immigration advice, casework and representation to EEA nationals under strict supervision and in accordance with the requirements of the OISC in both Norwich and outreach venues including Kings Lynn and Great Yarmouth
Undertake short term secondments to private solicitor firms and undertake casework and advocacy as directed by their training supervisors
Spend one day per week minimum at the offices of NCLS for the development and implementation of a specific project that will advance access to justice (The Project).
Maintain case files and client records on the NCLS data base
Support the referral of clients to the Bar Pro Bono Unit
Identify the social policy implications of issues presented by clients and take appropriate action to try influence social policy in regard to these issues.
Fulfil the obligations of the training contract and achieve competency in the Professional Education and Training Stage 2 outcomes in order to satisfy the requirements of the Solicitors Regulation Authority.
Attend and participate in the wider support, training and opportunities component of the Justice First Fellowship Scheme organised by The Legal Education Foundation and its partners.
To maintain a duty of confidentiality in respect of all client matters at all times;
To abide by the NCLS Equal Opportunities policy and to implement any relevant practice guidelines.
To attend the office at the required hours;
To undertake any other duties commensurate with the post as per the requirements of the Board.
The above may be subject to alteration from time to time according to any changes in service delivery, politics or priorities. As such, changes will be carried out following consultation with all parties involved.
Law Degree or General Diploma in Law
Successful completion of Legal Practice Course (LPC)
Ability to demonstrate a commitment to social welfare law
An understanding of and commitment to promoting equal opportunities
Ability to listen and communicate effectively, both orally and in writing
An interest in advocacy and debating
Proficiency in the use of ICT
Ability to be self-motivating and self-managing
Ability to plan and prioritise work
Ability to contribute to effective team working and mutually supportive staff working relationships
An understanding of how statutory and voluntary agencies work and the financial and organisational contexts they operate in.
Experience of volunteering and/ or working with volunteers
Numeracy and ability to produce and analyse statistical data.
Ability to manage, co-ordinate and develop a new project
Ability to attend occasional out of hours meetings and events as required
Ability to drive or a willingness to travel by public transport within and outside Norfolk