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Pro bono lawyer handed legal gong

Pro bono lawyer handed legal gong

A Corrs Chambers Westgarth lawyer has been recognised for her contribution to pro bono work._x000D_

A Corrs Chambers Westgarth lawyer has been recognised for her contribution to pro bono work.

Samantha Maddern has been awarded the 2010 Attorney General’s Community Service Law Award at the WA Law Week luncheon.

The award recognises an outstanding legal practitioner who provides a significant contribution to pro bono work in the Western Australian community.

The lawyer herself works pro bono with the employment law centre, offering legal assistance to people with disabilities, young people, people from non-English speaking backgrounds, Aboriginal people and people with limited literacy.

She also regularly volunteers at an evening legal clinic where she gives her clients advice on the legal merit of their cases, reviews legal documents and drafts correspondence or submissions on their behalf.

Maddern works part-time with Corrs to balance the pro bono work, family life, and private practice.

Maddern said: “There is something very rewarding about helping individuals who would otherwise not have access to any legal assistance. I see many of the most vulnerable people in our community, on low incomes, from non-English speaking backgrounds, on 457 visas, who often have very little idea of their rights but sense that they have been treated unfairly. Sometimes all it takes is a simple letter to resolve these matters.”

She said she hopes her award, and work in this area, encourages other lawyers to “get out there and do their bit”.

“No matter how time-pressed we are, there’s always a way to juggle responsibilities and to help others less fortunate than ourselves.”

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