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The Legal Free Advice in Warsaw

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Centre of Legal Aid Pro Bono. Fot. R.Motyl
Centre of Legal Aid Pro Bono. Fot. R.Motyl

Since the beginning of 2016, free legal aid in Poland has been given to, among others, the poorest, young and seniors, veterans and ex-servicemen, holders of the Large Family Card. Thirty-five free legal aid points were launched in the City of Warsaw according to a law passed last year.

The inhabitants of the City of Warsaw in a difficult financial situation have had a possibility to take advantage of free legal advice for many years. Since 2008, the legal advice has been provided in district offices. While from January 2012, the advice has been given under the operating at it Centre of Legal Aid Pro Bono operating at it, under an agreement between the City of Warsaw and the Warsaw Bar Association. Furthermore, the inhabitants of Warsaw take advantage of free legal aid which is offered by non-governmental organisations under the implementation of public tasks commissioned by the City in the mode of open competitions of offers. As regards the programmes, the following are provided: individual legal counselling, legal education groups, and assistance and support for the needy in contacts with institutions including, with the justice system, are additionally offered in some programmes.

- Since the beginning of January this year, we have launched 35 free legal aid points in Warsaw. This aid enjoys great popularity of the inhabitants, more than two thousand pieces of advice have already been given from the beginning of the year - says Hanna Gronkiewicz–Waltz, the Mayor of Warsaw. People from Warsaw most often took advantage of the civil law advice, family and administrative matters were popular.

Lawyers and legal advisers give the free legal aid, and in particularly justified cases, the aid is provided also by trainee lawyers or trainee legal advisers authorised by respectively – a lawyer or legal adviser giving free legal aid. While at points operated by the non-governmental organisations advice can also be given by tax advisers and higher law studies graduates having at least three years of experience. Free legal aid is given on the average of 5 days a week for at least 4 hours a day and is of consultative character. To obtain the free legal aid, it is required to show a document confirming the right to take advantage of the aforementioned aid.