Maybe a solicitor needs to know that sort of thing but I don't: user perspectives on the utility of legal self-help resources

Edited book (chapter)


Lawler, Merran, Giddings, Jeff and Robertson, Michael. 2009. "Maybe a solicitor needs to know that sort of thing but I don't: user perspectives on the utility of legal self-help resources." Buck, Alexy, Pleasence, Pascoe and Balmer, Nigel J. (ed.) Reaching further: innovation, access and quality in legal services. London, United Kingdom. The Stationery Office. pp. 26-46
Chapter Title

Maybe a solicitor needs to know that sort of thing but I don't: user perspectives on the utility of legal self-help resources

Book Chapter CategoryEdited book (chapter)
ERA Publisher ID3484
Book TitleReaching further: innovation, access and quality in legal services
AuthorsLawler, Merran (Author), Giddings, Jeff (Author) and Robertson, Michael (Author)
EditorsBuck, Alexy, Pleasence, Pascoe and Balmer, Nigel J.
Page Range26-46
Chapter Number2
Number of Pages21
Year2009
PublisherThe Stationery Office
Place of PublicationLondon, United Kingdom
ISBN978-0117067240
Abstract

Drawing upon research supported by the Australian Research Council, this paper explores the changing landscape of legal self-help in Australia and the emergence of the private for-profit provider as a major player in the development and dissemination of legal self-help materials. Initial findings from the research, which explores the experiences of self helpers in both litigious and non litigious settings, suggests that private service providers may be increasingly adept at producing self-help materials that meet the needs of certain users. We put forward the argument that one of the reasons for this is that private providers are not necessarily focused on the empowerment of the legal citizen. As a result, they are able to develop self-help legal resources that focus on the bare essentials the legal consumer needs to know or work through in order to undertake legal tasks. The utility of this stripped back approach to the development of self-help resources appears best suited to process or transaction-based legal work where the circumstances do not require the self-helper to exercise any significant degree of contextual judgement.

Keywordscitizens; access to legal services; self-help materials and resources; managing legal transactions without lawyers
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020489999. Other law and legal studies not elsewhere classified
480501. Access to justice
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Byline AffiliationsGriffith University
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