News In Focus
Lawyer in call for compulsory pro bono
A Glasgow solicitor has sent an open letter to all of Scotland's 129 MSPs calling for lawyers to be required to give some time every year working free for good causes.
Raymond McLennan, an intellectual property lawyer at Morisons in Edinburgh, raised the idea in a blog on innovation in the legal business and how to progress and improve standards of living for everyone.
He has since written to Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill to propose that a clause be inserted into the Legal Services (Scotland) Bill to commit all lawyers working in Scotland to donate a minimum of 20 hours a year to pro-bono work for the poor and needy, as part of their requirement to renew their annual practising certificate.
He added: "Yes, lawyers are in business to make a profit and to make money, but they also want to make a difference. This is an opportunity to make that difference, to give something back and set a principled example to make Scotland and Scots Law unique in the world once again."
The letter has been copied to all MSPs.
The Parliament considers the detail of the Legal Services Bill at stage 2 this month.