South West law firm Coodes Solicitors and domestic abuse charity First Light have joined forces to offer free legal clinics. The sessions will provide people who need to escape domestic abuse with information on their options and some of the legal issues they face.
First Light is inviting people to contact them to find out if they are eligible for a free session with a specialist domestic abuse lawyer from Coodes Solicitors.
Run as video or telephone conferences, the clinics offer information and support on a number of legal issues facing those experiencing domestic abuse. These include non-molestation or occupation orders, eligibility for Legal Aid and information relating to divorce or cases involving children.
Coodes Solicitors’ Family team provides legal advice to those seeking to escape an abusive relationship. This includes securing non-molestation and occupation orders and putting in place orders to protect children, including child arrangements orders and prohibited steps orders. The firm works closely with a number of charities, including First Light, often referring their clients to them for support.
Sarah Evans, Partner and domestic abuse specialist at Coodes Solicitors, said: “If you are experiencing domestic abuse it can be really difficult to know where to turn for support or what you can do to escape your abuser. These legal clinics are designed to help people understand their options.
“Sadly, we know that domestic abuse has become even more prevalent during the pandemic. The restrictions have also created additional difficulties for those seeking to escape and access support. It is more important than ever for us to offer our advice and these legal clinics give us another opportunity to reach those people who need it most.
“First Light is a fantastic charity that offers a whole range of advice and support to people across the South West. We are delighted to be working with them to deliver these legal clinics for their clients.”
First Light supports people in Cornwall, Devon and Wiltshire who have been affected by domestic abuse and sexual violence. The charity is independent of statutory agencies, including the Police, and every year helps thousands of adults and children in the South West to lead safer lives, free from violence and abuse.
Mel Francis, First Light Service Manager said: “We are delighted to have partnered with Coodes to deliver this invaluable service to people in Cornwall.
“This service will empower people to look at their options and take positive action. Accessing legal support can be pretty scary stuff and being able to have an informal conversation to get professional advice could help alleviate worries and concerns some people may have in speaking to a legal professional.”
To find out more about the legal clinics, contact First Light: 0300 777 4 777 or saferfutures.org.uk