The Salvation Army (Australia) Start Own Law Firm

Talking about changes in the legal profession.. this is a very interesting development.

Makes us think .. why don’t Greenpeace start an environmental practice ? Or any number of charities start a practice in their area of expertise… a great development

The Australian Broadcasting Corporation reports…


Salvos join forces with top end of town

Profits will be funnelled back into the Salvation Army’s humanitarian work. (AAP)

The Salvation Army will open a commercial law firm in the Sydney CBD later this year which will charge market rates to do property and conveyancing law for corporate and government clients.

Profits from the new firm, which will pay its lawyers proper salaries, will be funnelled back into the Salvation Army’s humanitarian work, including free legal advice for the poor and needy.

“We are really excited about the concept,” Lieutenant Colonel Miriam Gluyas from the Salvation Army told The 7.30 Report.

“We recognise that there are a whole lot of people who need it and we want to be there for people at the grassroots.”

The new firm, called Salvos Legal, has evolved out of the successful Courtyard Legal, a pro bono service by volunteer lawyers which the Salvation Army operates out of its church halls in Auburn and Parramatta in Western Sydney.

Solicitor Luke Geary gave up his partnership at a top Sydney law firm to work at Salvos Legal full-time.

“We act in areas of criminal law, family law, children’s law, debt, housing, welfare, social security, and in recent years we have done a lot of refugee and migration law,” Mr Geary said.

“I think it is really good to be able to go to work in the morning and say ‘well, as long as things fall the right way, we might be able to make a difference’.”

Associate Professor Ben Saul from Sydney University says the Salvation Army’s self-funding legal service addresses a real need, picking up cases which the Legal Aid Commission cannot, while not diluting the finite resources available for existing legal services.

“There’s a crisis in Legal Aid funding around the country,” Professor Saul said.

“Any initiative that can increase the availability of services for those in need is a really welcome development.”

The Salvation Army plans to set up more legal centres in New South Wales, Queensland and the ACT and is calling on lawyers to volunteer their services at their local Salvation Army churches.