Mills Oakley opens pro bono arm
Mills Oakley has partnered with Salvos Legal Humanitarian to provide pro bono legal services.
It comes as Mills Oakley looks to build a pro bono culture within the firm, a “key goal” of the firm, it said.
“As our firm continues to grow, it is important to continue to build relationships in the community and to be a good corporate citizen,” CEO John Nerurker said.
A team of five lawyers from Salvos Legal Humanitarian will be based within the Mills Oakley office in Sydney, with Salvos Legal Humanitarian supervising them.
Lawyers at Mills Oakley will provide assistance in their areas of expertise such as advocacy, statutory interpretations and so on.
“Many vulnerable people who find themselves in court do not understand the serious implications of their situation and need appropriate representation,” Nerurker said.
“Providing the resources to do this is a challenge for the entire legal profession, and an area where we want to make a contribution.”
Salvos Legal managing partner Luke Geary (pictured) said the partnership will start as a 12-month pilot on 1 July, with the firm providing services in family, criminal and children’s law.
It will become a permanent fixture after that.
The two firms already had an association, with four Mills Oakley lawyers recently completing a four-month secondment with Salvos Legal, amassing a total of 1000 pro bono hours.
The other bridge is Geary, who was previously a partner at Mills Oakley. The connection meant Mills Oakley was the first firm offered the partnership.
“I am hopeful that other firms will consider the merit and worth of building a culture of pro bono within their organisations,” Geary said.
“I would welcome discussions with any other firms with a vision and desire to make this happen in their own environments.”
Salvos Legal Humanitarian has 11 other offices through NSW and Queensland.