Grants of £2 million have been awarded to not for profit organisations at a local and regional level to enhance the legal advice and support available to those representing themselves in legal proceedings.
The Legal Support for Litigants in Person Grant (LSLIP) has been funded by the Ministry of Justice, with grants delivered and administered by the Access to Justice Foundation. The grants are designed to support projects and initiatives across the country that offer a broader range of support for Litigants in Person to help them understand legal processes and their rights within them, and to help people resolve their legal issues at the earliest possible opportunity.
The grants have been split into three rounds, covering local, regional and national initiatives. Grants totalling £500,000 were awarded earlier this summer to Support Through Court (STC) and RCJ Advice, LawWorks and Law for Life for national projects supporting Litigants in Person.
The local grants round is focused on supporting organisations and hubs around the country that are already working with litigants in person in multiple areas of civil and family law, focusing on scaling up their provision and evaluating effectiveness.
Local grants have been awarded to multiple not for profit organisations across the country through the formation of five delivery partnerships, including nine organisations forming a partnership to increase the support available to litigants in Dorset and South Somerset, and four organisations in North Yorkshire joining together to deliver greater advice services in their local area.
The regional round of grants has centred on developing services for litigants in person in geographic areas outside of London, where there are gaps in provision, to build up coordinated networks across a region that can be assessed with a view to replicating elsewhere.
Partnerships between not for profit organisations across North East, North Wales and Devon and Cornwall have been supported through the LSLIP grants, with projects designed to: address gaps in provision, increase capacity to support LiPs, develop virtual hubs, increase training, build greater awareness of services that support LiPs, and enhance referral systems.
These local and regional projects will make a significant difference to the range and level of services available for litigants in person, in areas of England and Wales where there is currently limited provision.
- Dorset & Somerset Partnership – led by Citizens Advice Central Dorset (£190,000)
- Suffolk & Norfolk Partnership – led by Suffolk Law Centre (£190,000)
- Birmingham, Coventry & Derbyshire Partnership – led by Central England Law Centre, approval (£190,000)
- Yorkshire Partnership – led by Citizens Advice Mid-North Yorkshire ( £190,000)
- Greater Manchester & North Lancashire Partnership – led by Greater Manchester Law Centre (£190,000)
- North East England Regional Partnership – led by North East Law Centre – (£477,659)
- North and Mid Wales Partnership led by Citizens Advice Ynys Mon – (£238,530)
- Devon and Cornwall Partnership led by Citizens Advice Teignbridge – (£238,923)
The LSLIP grant will build on the more than £9 million that the MOJ has invested in support for litigants in person in the civil and family courts since 2015, through the MOJ’s existing Litigants in Person Support Strategy (LIPSS).
For more information on LIPSS, please visit: https://atjf.org.uk/supporting-litigants-in-person