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Why we need better public legal education and information

Half of the population experience a civil justice issue every 36 months.

Only 11% of people accurately recognise their problems as legal issues.

The vast majority of people tackle their legal problems alone – only 6% use a lawyer and 4% use advice agencies.

A quarter (25%) of those with a legal problem seek help on the internet.

People with low levels of legal capability are less likely to take action, and less able to successfully solve legal problems. They are twice as likely to experience negative consequences as a result of their legal problems, including stress-related ill-health, loss of income and family breakdown.

Our work

In 2016–17 Law for Life’s Advicenow site recorded 1,064,460 sessions (individual visits to the site) by 806,776 users.

Advicenow’s curated information service brings together 1,600 pieces of public legal information from over 250 UK websites. Every piece is reviewed against our inclusion criteria.

Our most popular guides include:

  • How to apply for a court order about the arrangements for your children without the help of a lawyer – 12,000 page views per month.
  • A survival guide to benefits and living together – 9,200 views per month.
  • How to deal with a tax credit overpayment – 8,643 views per month.
  • How to win a PIP appeal – 8,361 views per month.
  • How to fill in your financial statement without the help of a lawyer (guide and film) – 5,000 views per month

In 2016-17 we worked with 65 different community organisations in England and Wales to deliver training, education and information to vulnerable people reaching 3071 beneficiaries directly.

Our ‘in person’ education and training provision supported Local Authorities, Community Groups and Trust Funders.

93% of training participants rated our training excellent or good.

Each year, 17,000 people use our PIP tool to create a personalised letter to challenge their benefit decision.

Our international work continues with Icelandic Human Rights Centre and French NGO Avijed to support migrant’s rights organisations.

Via our international teaching and consultancy services we reached over 60 justice organisations from 27 countries.

Published: 25 April 2018

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