Bristol Law Centre has launched a ‘Take a closer look’ campaign to fight discrimination and unfair treatment at work by helping workers access legal help and representation. Since dramatic cuts to legal aid (LASPO 2012), legal advice has only been available for discrimination cases (and not general employment problems) via a government telephone gateway, with little or no access to face to face advice or representation. This has resulted in many vulnerable people, experiencing discrimination in the workplace, not getting the help they need to seek redress.
Legal Expenses Insurance (LEI) is a standard ‘add-on’ to household insurance policies and it allows people to fund specialist legal advice and representation in employment-rights and discrimination cases – over 25 million households have this cover and many don’t know that it can help them with employment issues.
Bristol Law Centre has developed a range of materials, including a leaflet and short animation, to raise awareness of using LEI to access advice (the animation can be seen at www.bristollawcentre.org.uk/lei); and is already working with the Equality Advisory and Support Service and other key partners to reach workers and promote LEI.
Your legal costs may already be covered – If you have house or car insurance, it often includes cover to pay for legal advice. This means you can afford a lawyer and if you choose an expert in employment law, you’ll get the best result.
Bristol Law Centre is a leading specialist in discrimination and employment law
We give expert advice – face-to-face or by phone – to help you get fair treatment at work.
We’ll help you take your case to the Employment Tribunal if necessary.
We care. We’ll support and guide you every step of the way.
What is Legal Expenses Insurance?
Millions of people in the UK have Legal Expenses Insurance included within their standard house or car insurance policies, as well as some bank accounts. Bristol Law Centre can advise on how to access this cover and the strength of your case. We’re a charity and our aim is to make work a fairer place.
Find out if you are covered and how we can help
Alice has a disability which causes chronic pain in her hands and arms. She also suffers with depression, anxiety and panic disorder. Alice asked her employer for a voice recognition package, so she could do her job without increasing levels of pain and disability; they failed to provide this. As a result, Alice struggled to do the simplest things in life we all take for granted, such as washing her hair, or even wearing sleeves on her arms. It also added to her anxiety and depression.
Alice contacted Bristol Law Centre’s specialist employment team, who confirmed that her employer should provide reasonable adjustment for her disability. They advised that she could take a discrimination claim to the employment tribunal for their failure to do so. Alice was also told about Legal Expenses Insurance (LEI) and on checking her household policy, she discovered that she did have the cover to pay for a lawyer. She says “I was scared to go through the process, but my lawyer was so calm and knowledgeable and helped me to understand every step of the way. I felt much more in control, and stronger.”
Alice’s employer eventually settled her case for an undisclosed sum. The money has made a huge difference to her life; allowing her to pay for therapy to help her manage her disability and panic disorder. Alice was desperate when she contacted Bristol Law Centre, but now feels much more confident about her life, her ability to work and her future.