A new innovative internet and phone service offering legal advice specifically to young people is being piloted in Lambeth, Camden and Colchester by The Children's Society.
Lawyers for Young People will be available to all young people but it is particularly aimed at ensuring the most vulnerable have a much better, easier route through to an appropriate legal advisor than is often currently the case.
Certain groups of young people - those in care, the homeless, unaccompanied asylum seekers, children with communication problems and disabilities - often find it very difficult to get appropriate advice from a lawyer.
The service is initially being trialled as a pilot scheme across three areas, the London Boroughs of Lambeth and Camden, and Colchester in Essex, with a full nationwide roll out plan scheduled from April 2010 onwards.
Experts working for the service will help young people work out when, how and who will help with their problems and, if necessary, find a solicitor to advise.
Liz Fisher-Frank, Principal Solicitor, Lawyers for Young People, commented: "I believe that many young people, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds, are unable to access the legal representation that they desperately need. The pilot phase will give the unique opportunity to young people in these three areas to access high quality legal advice, whilst also helping us to establish the long-term viability of the project".
The service builds upon an initial project set up by Fisher Jones Greenwood LLP, a commercial and family law firm. The Children's Society acquired the unit in April 2009.