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Legal Services Director

Employer
North Wales Community Law
Location
Conwy (City/Town)
Salary
£38,000 - £42,000 (pro rata if part time) dependant on experience
Closing date
7 Jun 2024

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Practice area
Civil litigation
Contract type
Permanent
Hours
Full time
PQE
3 years, 4 years, 5 years, 6 years, 7 years+
Position
Solicitor
Sector
Public sector/Charities

A unique opportunity for an experienced solicitor committed to social justice.

We seek an experienced solicitor (3 years PQE) with expertise in civil litigation and a commitment to social justice to lead our legal work.

This role offers the right candidate a unique opportunity to build a strategic caseload that challenges systemic inequality and injustice. Supported by the Operations Director, who is responsible for all operational and contract management, the postholder will identify and take cases that have the greatest impact for communities in our region and progress the burgeoning body of rights based legislation in Wales.

We are particularly keen to hear from people with experience of legally aided litigation in either housing or family, and knowledge of relevant Welsh law. We know that the right person might not meet all our criteria, and we’re open to applications from suitably qualified people who are genuinely passionate about what we do.

Hours, work patterns and remote working will be discussed with the successful candidate based on their specific needs. In addition, you can expect 35 days annual leave including bank holidays (pro rata), extra leave between Christmas and New Year, a commitment to investing in your professional development, a company pension scheme and comprehensive employee assistance programme.

 

Wellbeing is a core value of North Wales Community Law, and we recognise that we all thrive when our needs are met.

About North Wales Community Law

Our vision is that everyone in North Wales has access to the services and expertise they need to uphold their rights, fight inequality and challenge injustice.

North Wales Community Law is an independent, not-for-profit legal charity committed to alleviating poverty, promoting equality, and helping everyone create a fairer and more just society. We do this by providing free, community based legal advice on issues affecting the day to day lives of people living in North Wales, using the law as a tool for social change, and sharing our knowledge and skills with others.

We opened our doors in 2023 and are already making our mark, forging innovative collaborations with grassroots groups and national organisations. Working in foodbanks, community centres and libraries, our grant funding enables us to design services driven by what our clients need rather than billing targets and profit.

The successful candidate will join us as we continue to establish our profile in Wales and the UK, championing justice, accountability, and the rights of people in North Wales who are marginalised through poverty, discrimination, or disadvantage.

About North Wales

North Wales is a unique region with beaches, mountains, forests and lakes all within a short distance. The area benefits from good schools, comparatively low house prices and a rich and varied cultural history. Welsh is Britain’s oldest language and is thriving across north Wales. Wales’s progressive legislative record provides unequalled opportunity to make a lasting impact for communities with little access to legal advice and representation.

Duties:

  1. To research, identify and lead strategic legal challenges that seek to address systemic inequalities in North Wales, and uphold the legal rights of local people facing poverty, inequality and injustice.
  2. To undertake supervision and line management of other members of the legal team
  3. To support your own and the team’s wellbeing and encourage a positive working environment.  
  4. To give appropriate, specialist advice and representation on housing and / or family matters, managing your own caseload and making applications for public funding as required.  
  5. To represent clients at the county court and/or in the Family Court as required.  
  6. To liaise with landlords’ and other parties’ representatives, solicitors, other agencies and groups as required.
  7. To ensure that all casework, advice and representation complies with the requirements of the organisations’ processes, accreditations and, where publicly funded, complies with the requirements of the Legal Aid Agency.  
  8. To collate evidence and work in partnership with other advice providers locally and regionally to influence the development of policy and legislation in relation to poverty, inequality and access to justice.
  9. To actively engage with local community groups and organisations, bringing together our experience, skill and knowledge with that of others, sharing learning wherever possible.
  10. To prepare reports on the work of the legal team for the information of the Trustee Board, funders and other stakeholders, as required.
  11. To ensure compliance with the Solicitors Regulation Authority requirements.  
  12. To attend appropriate training courses and maintain readership of relevant publications to maintain and develop professional expertise.  
  13. With the Operations Director, identify opportunities to achieve stability and growth for NWCL and positive change for North Wales’s communities.  
  14. With the Operations Director, lead a culture that embeds the values of the organisation, promotes equality and values diversity.
  15. To carry out such other duties as may be required.  

Person Specification

Essential

  • Experience of civil and/or family litigation, representing clients in the county or family courts.
  • Sound understanding of the SRA Professional Conduct Rules, SQM standards and Solicitor’s
  • Accounts Rules and ability to apply them as necessary. Ability to manage a busy caseload, working under pressure and meeting deadlines.
  • Good organisational and time management skills.
  • Excellent listening, verbal, and written communication skills.
  • Ability to communicate effectively with the organisation’s client group.
  • Experience of team and multi-agency working.
  • Commitment to sharing learning, skills, and knowledge.
  • An understanding of and commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion, and its relevance to legal advice.
  • Strongly commitment to North Wales Community Law’s vision, mission, and values. Excellent IT skills.

Desirable

  • Experience of working with communities/individuals who are marginalised, affected by discrimination and/or of working with agencies in the voluntary or statutory sector in a relevant field of work.
  • Experience of practice in housing and homelessness law and/or experience of meeting the legal needs of survivors of violence against women, domestic abuse and sexual violence.
  • Experience of legal aid (including certificated) work, and an understanding of optimising legal aid income.
  • Experience of providing advocacy (e.g. on a duty possession scheme).
  • Proven experience of billing procedures, meeting financial targets and time recording requirements using case management systems.
  • Experience of working with IT systems including CCMS, SharePoint and paperless working.
  • An understanding of partnership working.
  • Experience of working on grant funded projects. Experience of line management.
  • Ability in written and spoken Welsh.

To Apply

Please email recruitment@nwcl.cymru, with the job title in the subject line, attaching:

  • An up to date CV
  • A covering letter*,
  • A completed Equality Monitoring Form

 The deadline for applications is 9am on Friday 7th June.

Interviews will be held remotely the week beginning Monday 10th June.

We recognise the value of diverse perspectives in our work and encourage applications from people of all backgrounds, communities, identities and experiences, including those with personal experience of the inequalities and injustices we seek to address.

If you require any reasonable adjustments as part of the recruitment process, please let us know by emailing recruitment@nwcl.cymru.

*Please structure the covering letter so that you provide answers to the following questions:

1) Please describe how your skills, qualities and experiences meet the requirements set out in the Job Description. Where possible, provide examples (which could be from a professional, voluntary or personal context) to demonstrate those skills, qualities and experiences. [500 words max.]

2) Tell us how you have used, or how you would like to use, the law and / or community action to fight inequality and challenge injustice in your community. Where possible please relate your answer to your previous experience, which could be in paid or voluntary work, or research you have conducted. [250 words max.]

For more information and an informal conversation about the role, please contact Katherine Adams on 01492 484802.

We look forward to hearing from you.

 

 

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