Whether providing assistance to an individual at one of our community based weekly legal clinics, or working on a cross-jurisdiction matter for a global NGO, providing pro bono legal advice is a fundamental part of our CR programme.
Trust Law is the Thomson Reuters Foundation’s global pro bono service. CMS have been members since 2011 and have successfully been involved in a large number of national and international pro bono projects. More recently, we have been working alongside our clients’ in-house legal teams to support a wide range of pro bono projects.
“CMS has been an active member of TrustLaw right from the start and has taken on 79 pro bono projects through TrustLaw. Recently, CMS hosted a legal workshop for NGOs and social enterprises in Scotland, an event that was extremely useful for our Scottish members who are trying to understand their commercial and operational legal issues. It was a valuable opportunity for them to speak to lawyers face-to-face about issues ranging from intellectual property, to corporate governance and employment matters. CMS continues to support us by working on a guide and webinar on data protection for our members.” Lauren Meyer, Head of Legal, Trust Law
Dentsu Aegis Network Pro Bono Partnership
In 2018 we formed a pro bono partnership with Dentsu Aegis Network - working collaboratively to provide pro bono support to deserving charities and NGOs via our relationship with TrustLaw. We are delighted to have been instructed to provide support on various legal projects for organisations such as Third Age Project, Thomson Reuters Foundation and Justice and Care UK.
Legal Clinics in London
CMS volunteers in London support the Islington Law Centre and St. Luke’s Legal Advice Centre. These weekly clinics provide free legal advice to those who cannot afford legal services. Our lawyers provide a range of advice on subjects such as utility disputes; landlord and tenant problems; consumer complaints and employment issues.
A4ID (Advocates for International Development)
CMS is a founding partner of A4ID - a global charity that works in partnership with the world’s leading law firms to provide free access to legal advice for NGOs. We have provided pro bono legal advice on nearly 100 projects, working with a range of international charities.
Building strong partnerships - Marie Curie
We provide a range of pro bono legal advice to many charities, including Marie Curie – a charity that provides care and support for people living with any terminal illness, and their families.
“The support we’ve received from CMS’s property team has been amazing. I regularly express my disbelief to my colleagues about the scale of the generosity – we’ve had advice on countless matters in the last year, saving us over £100k. We’re never made to feel like a second-rate pro bono client – in fact the speed and quality of response is better than what we would get from many a paid lawyer! CMS are making an incredibly valuable contribution to our mission: to provide terminally ill people with high quality care.” Miranda Fisher, Legal Counsel, Marie Curie
CMS pro bono collaboration with Inspiring Scotland
Inspiring Scotland tackles some of the long-term, entrenched social problems in Scotland. They are a venture philanthropy organisation, meaning they apply venture capital principles – such as long-term investment and tailored development support – to the voluntary sector. Their staff tailors their support to each charity’s unique circumstances and helps them develop their work. To complement that support, they have established a network of pro bono supporters – professionals and experts with a wide variety of skills – who help the charities with one-off projects or commit to continued support.
CMS was one of the founding corporate partners in the pro bono supporters’ group and is an integral part of the non-financial support they offer to charities. A charity supported last year commented: “We have been extremely fortunate to have such an esteemed firm act on our behalf and the fact that it is through a pro bono scheme is incredible. For a small charity like ourselves this has had a very positive impact financially and taken away any kind of organisational stresses we were beginning to experience.”