Family Representation

If you are having to represent yourself in court and cannot afford a lawyer we have a number of schemes that may help.

The current schemes are:

Family Public Law Duty Scheme  - this scheme is delivered by qualified family solicitors. A public law family solicitor is based in our office on the 4th floor of the Central London Family Court each week day. They can help you if you are in court for a hearing where a Local Authority is applying to take your child into care. The solicitor will represent you on the day then talk to you about applying for legal aid to assist you further with your case. Come to our office as soon as you arrive at court to see if the duty solicitor can help you.  

First Hearings - First Hearings are held in the Central London Family Court each Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. If your hearing, which is often called a FHDRA is in front of a Judges and you are unrepresented you can be represented on a free or pro bono basis by one of our solicitors. We are only permitted to represent one party so if we have already agreed to represent your ex-partner, we are sorry we will not be able to represent, or give advice to you. We will try and direct you to other help.

There will be other times when you will need representation in a family case and we will talk to you about whether you can use a fixed fee to ask a solicitor to represent you, say in a case about your children or money.  We also work closely with the Bar Pro Bono Unit to obtain representation at hearings or advice about a complex matter. You need to be referred to the Bar Pro Bono Unit at least 3 weeks before the date of your hearing and we are a referral agency. Please see the Bar Pro Bono Unit’s website where you can download the form. It is helpful to visit us with the form and all the required details as this will help us make the referral for you.