Updates on the scheme

Citizenship Foundation

TrustLaw Index of Pro Bono Thursday, 5th February 2015

Last year TrustLaw launched the first annual TrustLaw Index of Pro Bono. The Index looks at how much pro bono work law firms are undertaking on a country-by-country basis around the world and identifies global trends in the pro bono marketplace. The first Index, compiled with data from over 100 firms, representing 36,000 lawyers in 69 countries, showed that respondent firms donated 1.55 million hours of free legal support in 2013 worth $388 million. Read more about the findings from 2014 here. 

Since its launch last year, the Index is becoming an invaluable tool to help spread the practice of pro bono around the world by highlighting successful pro bono programmes, providing benchmarks on engagement levels in different jurisdictions and demonstrating the amount of pro bono being done globally on a country-by-country basis. Over time they will also be able to build up information on the trends helping to shape the pro bono sector all over the world. 

This year, TrustLaw hope to generate an even more comprehensive picture of the global pro bono landscape, with more firms in more jurisdictions submitting data on their pro bono services through their online survey

The more data they have to populate the Index, the better able they will be to create a meaningful resource for firms interested in strengthening their pro bono practice.

How can your firm contribute to the 2015 Index?

1. Complete the online TrustLaw Index of Pro Bono survey by Monday 6 April 2015. Before completing the survey, please read the TrustLaw Index of Pro Bono Definition of Qualifying Pro Bono and Survey Questions. These tools explain the information you will need to collect. There are 31 questions.

2. Spread the word – the more firms that contribute, and the more countries TrustLaw can analyse, the greater tool the Index will be. Please share this email in your firm, with your legal networks, and with other firms and lawyers.

Who can contribute?
Law firms in every country across the world are invited to contribute, irrespective of size, specialism or how much pro bono they do.

Why a global index of pro bono?
Collecting information about pro bono enables TrustLaw to highlight success factors, show how much pro bono is being done on a country-by-country basis, and give a picture of the global pro bono market. Over time, the Index will show how the pro bono sector is evolving and will uncover emerging trends.

The Index is an invaluable tool to spread the practice of pro bono by highlighting successful pro bono programmes, providing benchmarks on engagement levels in different jurisdictions and demonstrating the amount of pro bono being done globally. In many countries, pro bono is an emerging area, and showing different ways of supporting pro bono initiatives, such as setting up a pro bono committee, incentivising pro bono and setting pro bono targets, can help lawyers the world over decide what is best for their firm.

What information will TrustLaw publish about your firm?
The only information that will be attributable to your firm will be:

• The average number of pro bono hours per fee earner, per year, in each jurisdiction your firm operates.
• The percentage of fee earners undertaking ten or more hours of pro bono per year.

Please see the definitions of Qualifying Pro Bono and Qualifying Fee Earners for further guidance.

Country profiles - The Index will be published on a country-by-country basis, not on a global level. For example, if you complete the survey for your firm’s pro bono activities in India, this information will be included in the India analysis only.

What is rest of the data used for? The additional information requested will be collated and published on an anonymous basis, or used to inform the TrustLaw Index of Pro Bono’s industry analysis. This includes the structure of pro bono practices, types of pro bono matters, whether pro bono is considered for determining compensation of fee-earners, and levels of partner involvement. None of this additional information will be accredited to individual firms.

To understand how your firm’s information will be included, see the 2014 Index findings.
What if you can’t provide some of the information?
TrustLaw understand that each law firm has different policies concerning the publication of data. While they wholeheartedly encourage you to complete the full survey, they will accept partial submissions.

When will the TrustLaw Index of Pro Bono be launched?
The TrustLaw Index of Pro Bono will be launched in May 2015. All contributing firms will be invited to a series of launch events in major cities around the world.

Who is TrustLaw?
TrustLaw is the Thomson Reuters Foundation’s global pro bono legal programme. They are the largest free pro bono service in the world, and connect law firms and corporate legal teams across 170 countries with high-impact NGOs and social enterprises working to create social and environmental change.

For further information, please contact the TrustLaw team.

Phone: +44 20 7542 0240