The first Pro Bono legal aid centre in Malaysia to be established by a private university
A legal aid centre where the public, especially the underprivileged, can seek pro bono legal services is now operational at Taylor’s University Lakeside Campus in Subang Jaya. The Taylor’s Legal Aid Centre was officially launched today by Malaysian Bar President, Mr. Ragunath Kesavan and Taylor’s University Vice Chancellor and President, Professor Dato’ Dr Hassan Said.
During the event, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between the Bar Council Legal Aid Centre and Taylor’s University whereby the Bar Council Legal Aid Centre (Kuala Lumpur) will support Taylor’s Legal Aid Centre by providing lawyers and chambering students to supervise and vet the legal advice delivered at the centre.
Also present at the ceremony were Dr. Rajeswari Kanniah, Dean of Taylor’s Law School as well as the staff and students of Taylor’s University.
Set to be fully operational by end of March 2011, the legal aid centre is the first to be established by a law school of a private university in Malaysia. It will be managed under the direct supervision of Dr Rajeswari who will oversee all operational matters with the assistance of two law lecturers and student representatives.
While its primary target will be the communities of Sunway and Subang Jaya which are located within the vicinity of Taylor’s University Lakeside Campus, the legal aid centre will also cater to members of the general public seeking legal advice.
Speaking at the event, Professor Dato’ Dr Hassan said, “We are proud of our law students for putting in a lot of time and effort in establishing the Taylor’s Legal Aid Centre and I especially thank Dr Rajeswari, Dean of the Taylor’s Law School for overseeing the project which provides an avenue for the law students to apply their textbook learning to real life legal problems while at the same time performing a much needed community service.
“We aspire to instill a sense of responsibility among our students towards the community while emphasizing that the legal profession is a noble one which upholds justice for the people, especially those from the lower income group who are not able to seek legal redress.
“Thus, they will be better prepared with the theory and practical aspects of law while ensuring they become industry-ready graduates and stand out in the industry well ahead of other fresh graduates,” said Professor Dato’ Dr Hassan.
President of the Malaysian Bar, Mr Ragunath Kesavan, commended Taylor’s for setting up the Legal Aid Centre.
“The launch of the Taylor’s Legal Aid Centre in collaboration with the Bar Council, is an important step towards our objective to ensure that justice remains within reach for all. Taylor’s must be commended as this is an important CSR project that would have a huge impact and benefit the students, staff and surrounding communities,” he said.
The scope of subjects handled by Taylor’s Legal Aid Centre is limited to matters covered under the Consumer Protection Act, landlord and tenancy matters, financial matters such as banking and insurance, family law matters and employment matters. The law students who attend to clients will research the legal problems and prepare the legal advice in collaboration with the Bar Council Legal Aid Centre (Kuala Lumpur) before it is delivered to the client.
Legal assistance provided by Taylor’s Legal Aid Centre is limited to advice and does not cover legal representation in courts or tribunals. All criminal law matters will be referred to the Bar Council Legal Aid Centre or the National Legal Aid Foundation.
The Taylor’s Legal Aid Centre is in operation from 2.00 – 5.00pm every Wednesday and Friday commencing end of March 2011, and members of the public may walk-in to request for consultation, or contact them at the following:
Tel : 03-5629 5519
Fax : 03-5629 5296
Email : [email protected]
About Taylor’s Law School
Taylor’s Law School was recently voted as “Malaysia’s Most Popular Law School” based on the Malaysian Student Survey which was participated by close to 9,000 respondents aged between sixteen to nineteen years.
At Taylor’s Law School, mooting and debates are essential exercises that are part of the training for future lawyers to help hone their presentation skills and practice thinking on their feet. All Year 1 students have to participate in at least one moot. Students also participate in internal debating and mooting competitions. The best mooters and debaters are selected to represent Taylor’s Law School in national and international competitions.
Taylor’s Law School is the only law school in Malaysia to be an institutional member of LAWASIA, an international organization of lawyers’ associations, individual lawyers, judges and legal academics in the Asia Pacific region. Taylor’s Law School emerged national champions and won the right to represent Malaysia in the 5th LAWASIA International Moot Competition 2010 grand finals held in New Delhi, India.