Solicitors to offer free legal advice to victims of London Bridge attack
Pro bono panel to give London lawyers chance to help those affected
Solicitors in London will offer free legal advice to those bereaved or injured following the London Bridge and Borough Market, the Law Society has announced.
Seven people were killed and 48 injured in Saturday's (3 June) attack during which three men drove a van into pedestrians before stabbing other members of the public in the area around Borough Market. All three assailants were shot dead by police eight minutes after the first emergency call was made.
Following the overwhelming response from law firms after the recent Manchester attack, where more than 100 firms, chambers, and individuals offered their services free of charge, London-based lawyers are now being asked to offer their help to those affected in the capital.
The president of the Law Society, Robert Bourns, said: 'Those affected by this terrible attack will be dealing with enormous personal distress '“ physical, emotional or otherwise. That will be exacerbated by unforeseen and sometimes complex legal issues caused by this event.
'We hope free legal advice will assist victims of last Saturday's attack in London to deal with any distressing practical issues that arise and relieve just a little of the worry.'
A panel of solicitor firms will be convened by the Law Society, along with LawWorks, the solicitors' pro bono charity, and the City of London Law Society.
London law firms with the relevant expertise will be asked to register with the pro bono panel if they wish to get involved.
'The panel will operate on a referral basis so that the process is as easy as possible for victims,' said Bourns. 'We are reaching out to the relevant agencies in London to this end.'
Together with LawWorks, the Law Society is working on a system that will enable people to access and offer advice through the panel. 'Protocols will ensure a consistent, high quality of relevant pro bono legal advice is given to all who use the panel,' said the society.
Firms and solicitors wishing to volunteer should e-mail: londonprobono@LawSociety.org.uk
Matthew Rogers is a legal reporter at Solicitors Journal