Today, Friday 11th November, sees National Pro Bono Week drawing to a close. At 1 Crown Office Row, our members, at their own and the clerks’ discretion, undertake a number and range of cases without charging or at reduced rates for their work. As legal aid has been cut, this enables our barristers to take on cases that otherwise would not be heard.
Here’s a review of some of the most interesting cases that 1 COR members have taken pro bono over the past year.
Jim Duffy is a member of the Court of Appeal’s pro bono scheme, where barristers represent litigants in person before the Court of Appeal across a broad spectrum of practice areas.
This week Jim has been acting pro bono (instructed by AvMA) for the family of an elderly man whose dementia was apparently “unmasked” by general anaesthetic used during routine surgery. He died six months later following a series of falls in care homes and at hospital.
New tenant Rhoderick Chalmers also undertook instruction from AvMA to represent a family pro bono in Scarborough in September.
Suzanne Lambert, who has a broad civil law practice with experience in both public and private law matters, has done a First Tier Tribunal (Immigration) appeal on behalf of a Bangladeshi single mother who has been in the UK for 10 years and has 2 children. The appeal was brought on procedural and Article 8 grounds. They succeeded and the Home Office is required to reconsider her application for discretionary leave. This was a Bar Pro Bono case.
Suzanne has also taken on a pro bono case before the Privy Council in December. She will be led by James Badenoch QC in relation to an unlawful prosecution claim. The matter relates to the deemed possession of firearms under Trinidad & Tobago legislation.
Rachel Marcus, a barrister specialising in healthcare matters, has been acting on behalf of the family of James Phelan. James was found dead in May 2016 outside the hospital where he been being treated. The 42 year old man had decided to take his own detox from alcohol and was taken to A&E suffering from hallucinations. There was a widely publicised police search and campaign to find him but sadly he was found by the dual carriageway near to the hospital a week later, deceased.
There have been three pre inquest reviews, but no inquest is in sight yet. The family are still waiting for answers from the hospital and the police. Rachel continues to support their inquiries and work towards some resolution for the family.
This shows some of the range and variety of pro bono work taken on by our members.
For pro bono enquiries for our London barristers please email email@example.com.
For pro bono enquiries for our Brighton barristers please email firstname.lastname@example.org.