VAS can provide assistance in two ways:
1. To the requesting organisation itself – for legal issues arising for the organisation.
2. To an individual as a client of a requesting organisation – in these circumstances
VAS will gladly provide assistance, but it can only be via the requesting organisation
acting as an intermediary.
Areas of law covered include:
VAS does not provide services in family law, child care law or criminal law - these are covered by State legal aid schemes.
The scheme makes available every service which barristers ordinarily provide to clients. Barristers can become involved at any or for all stages of a legal issue.
Advising whether there may be a legal angle to a particular problem;
Helping with the drafting of initial letters;
Drafting documents needed to bring a claim to Court;
Representing a client in Court;
Providing training in advocacy (how to plead a case) or other legal issues to organisations that may need to represent clients themselves;
Providing advice in relation to law reform and legislative drafting;
In certain circumstances, VAS can provide advice on initiating court proceedings and can sometimes provide a barrister to act in such cases.
While VAS reserves the right to refuse any request, VAS will ordinarily accept requests from charities, NGOs and civic society groups such as MABS and Citizens Information. VAS can provide legal services to either the organisations themselves or their clients, with the organisation acting as an intermediary.
Stages of a VAS Case from Request to Conclusion