Hallam link-up sees students help the elderly write wills

Solicitor Alex Guy from hlw Keeble Hawson and law  student Tash Wright
Solicitor Alex Guy from hlw Keeble Hawson and law student Tash Wright

Law students are helping the city’s elderly residents write their wills in a new scheme at one of the region’s biggest law firms.

The Wills and Probate department at hlw Keeble Hawson has linked up with the law school at Sheffield Hallam University for the new initiative, aimed at helping the community while giving students hands-on work experience.

After going through a rigorous recruitment process organised by the university, 17 students are on the Private Client Enterprise scheme, which involves witnessing wills, working with Age UK and participating in Free Wills Month, when the over 55s can have wills written or updated for free.

hlw Keeble Hawson has offices in Sheffield, Leeds and Doncaster, Law firm partner Michele Todd says the scheme demonstrates students’ commitment to the profession – and enables the law firm to develop potential employees.

“The programme’s impact on the local community is also significant and our clients find it rewarding that we are helping the next generation of lawyers,” she added.

Hallam law lecturer Vinny Jethwa said: “Our first and second year law students enjoy gaining work experience and, by participating, they help the local community and gain a sense of social responsibility.”

The placement is part of the Private Enterprise Scheme giving first and second-year students work experience in a professional environment, which has won the university’s Law School a nomination in the LawWorks & Attorney General Student Awards 2014.