Need

Community Legal Centres (CLCs) face a funding crisis and need new sources of revenue. 

Law Graduates face increasingly poor job prospects and need new pathways to employment. 

The Project is an efficient, effective and sustainable way of providing legal assistance to the community and improving opportunities for law graduates.

Overview

The PJP is a practical legal training (PLT) project run in partnership with community legal centres.

The cost of the PJP graduate program is competitive with other PLT courses. Each graduate is guaranteed a work experience placement at a CLC. Some lectures will be provided by judges, silks and senior practitioners, and graduates would have access to a support network throughout the year.

Proceeds from the graduate course are contributed to the CLCs which offer work placements.

In conjunction with its graduate course, the Project runs 10 CPD seminars per year for members of the profession. These provide opportunities for graduates to meet practitioners, and provide revenue to fund the administration of the project. These events are based on the Piddington Society model.

Pilot Project

We commenced our first graduate training in January 2016.

Outcomes

  1. For law graduates - An excellent PLT course, meaningful work experience placements, a simplified and centralized application process and opportunities to meet and learn from senior practitioners.
  2. For CLCs - A new source of revenue, improved processes for the placement and supervision of graduates, rationalization of insurances and reduction in administration.
  3. For disadvantaged people - The pilot project will generate more than 2000 hours of pro bono legal service. This could mean providing legal advice and representation to 500 disadvantaged people who might otherwise be turned away. There is potential for far greater impact in future years. 
  4. For the Community - Improving access to Justice also improves the administration of Justice. PWC has conservatively estimated that every dollar spent on legal aid generates a return of $1.60-$2.25. The National Association of CLCs estimated that the return on investment is $18. (See generally the Productivity Commission's Report).

 

For more information, please email nvh@piddingtonsociety.com