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Solicitor- Team Leader, Edinburgh - THOMSON LEGAL
Edinburgh +44 (0)131 450 7164 Glasgow +44 (0)141 244 0260 Aberdeen +44 (0) 1224 502 044 London +44 (0)203 174 2482 Dublin +353 (0)1 699 1360
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Solicitor- Team Leader, Edinburgh

The Scottish Legal Aid Board (SLAB) was set up in 1987 to manage legal aid in Scotland. We are a non-departmental public body responsible to the Scottish Government. Our main purpose is to manage and improve continuously publicly funded legal assistance and to advise Scottish Ministers on its strategic development for the benefit of society. SLAB is a highly ethical organisation, carrying out rewarding work that may have a considerable impact on clients’ lives. As a business, SLAB is offering stable and secured employment and a low staff rotation ratio, likely due to the strong and stable career opportunity we are able to offer to employees. Our total reward package includes the following: flexible working hours, remote working from home, the opportunity to apply for a seasonal ticket loan for public transport, a competitive holiday entitlement of 34 days per year (inclusive of public and privilege holidays) which increasing after 5 years of continuous service, and a 6% contributory pension scheme is in operation, the terms of which are in line with public service pension schemes. In some cases, we may financially contribute to relocation expenses for roles out with the Central Belt.If you wish to learn more about the Scottish Legal Aid Board (SLAB) and our other direct services please visit the SLAB website.

Information about the role:

We are currently recruiting for Solicitor Team Leader Grade 6 within the Solicitor Contact Line (SCL) Department. This post is a fixed term maternity cover for up to 12 months on a full time basis. The essential purpose of the role is to oversee and coordinate the team of solicitors on SLAB’s Solicitor Contact Line to ensure that high quality criminal legal defence services are provided to suspects detained or arrested for questioning in police stations by:

  • Providing cover on an ad-hoc basis for the SLAB Solicitor Contact Line responding to suspects’ requests for legal advice as appropriate; and attending police stations for face-to face interviews between suspects and the police
  • Providing legal advice and support to the SCL solicitors and monitoring the quality of legal advice provided to suspects.

Main Duties and Responsibilities:

  1. Provide day-to-day legal advice and legal direction to the SCL solicitors
  • Provide legal advice and support to SCL solicitors on casework issues, monitor and give feedback as required.
  • Conduct regular checking of the advice given to suspects by SCL solicitors, both by telephone and at personal attendances.
  • Be responsible for day to day compliance with SLAB policies relating to the legal aspects of the SCL operation.
  • Be responsible for the collation of statistical data as required.
  1. Provide day-to-day supervision of the SCL solicitors
  • Ensure appropriate solicitor cover within the SCL at all times.
  • Setting of rotas.
  • Be responsible for day to day compliance with SLAB people-related and administrative policies; and liaise with other departments as required e.g. monitoring any absence levels, liaising with HR to take remedial action as required.
  • Carry out any recruitment of staff, as required, in line with HR & SLAB policy.
  • Manage performance of the SCL solicitors in line with SLAB’s performance management process.
  • Promote team-working , including that of a self-managed team when appropriate; and positive team morale.
  • Effectively communicate with all SCL staff via briefings and team meetings, and with individuals, as appropriate.
  • Liaise with Director of Operations as appropriate on the optimum delivery of the SCL service.
  1. Manage day-to-day office functioning
  • Preparation of an on-going management of staff rota to ensure optimum coverage of the SCL.
  • Make arrangements for the purposes of cross border attendances.
  • Ensure that the SCL Manual is continually updated to improve upon the service.
  • Authorise and verify all SCL staff pay claims and associated expenses.
  • Update spreadsheets as appropriate.
  1. Assist and participate in the training of staff within the SCL, as required
  • Provide effective on-job training to new staff.
  • Oversee the on-going development training of all SCL solicitors and monitor their CPD requirements.
  • Liaise with Director of Operations as appropriate to agree training requirements.
  • Implement any new procedures.
  1. Represent the SCL at in-house meetings/Project Boards and outside bodies as required
  • Build, maintain and promote effective communications and relationships with other SLAB staff; PDSO; and other bodies as required such as Police Scotland, the Law Society of Scotland, and the Crown Office.
  • Attend meetings, internal and external as directed to represent the Interest of the SCL and/or SLAB as appropriate.
  • Prepare reports as directed by the Director of Operations.

And on occasion as required for the optimum operation of the SCL, work as a SCL solicitor as follows:

  1. Provide telephone advice to suspects detained/arrested for questioning in police stations
  • Provide proper, appropriate, timely and independent advice and representation. Ensure that all representation and assistance is provided effectively and efficiently.
  • Promote and work for the best interests of the client and to ensure that the client is dealt with fairly.
  • Provide the client with fearless, vigorous and effective defence and to use all proper and lawful means to secure the best outcome for the client.
  1. Attend police stations to provide representation at interview to suspects detained for questioning in police stations
  • Provide proper, appropriate, timely and independent advice and representation. Ensure that all representation and assistance is provided effectively and efficiently.
  • Promote and work for the best interests of the suspect and to ensure that the suspect is dealt with fairly.
  • Provide the client with fearless, vigorous and effective defence and to use all proper and lawful means to secure the best outcome for the suspect.
  1. Apply/adhere to practices, procedures and Codes of Practice to ensure the maximum efficiency and effectiveness of the SCL
  • Ensure own conduct complies with the Statutory Code of Practice issued by SLAB in connection with the provision of criminal legal assistance and complies with all other professional standards and obligations.
  • Ensure accurate time recording of own casework.
  • Apply standard practices and procedures at all times. 

Candidate Requirements:

  • An in-depth working knowledge of the criminal justice system and legal aid.
  • People management experience.
  • A sound technical ability as a criminal court practitioner with ideally circa 3 years’ criminal court experience in Scots Law.
  • A current valid full driving licence with immediate access to a car on an as-required basis with insurance cover for business use.
  • Computer literate in Word, Excel, time and case recording would be desirable.
  • Ability to lead a team and to work effectively as part of the team.
  • Drive / Self-motivation – the ability to work in a purposeful way to achieve results, using own initiative to make things happen; working to high standards to produce high quality output.
  • Well-developed communication skills (oral and written), able to influence and persuade others. Good writing skills to produce concise, high quality reports/briefs, in such a way as to be clearly understood.
  • Sound Judgement – the ability to evaluate information and courses of action to reach logical and objective decisions about what is most likely to lead to the desired result.
  • Strong Client / Customer Awareness – the ability to identify with clients and key contacts and quickly build effective rapport.
  • Flexible and adaptable.
  • Integrity.
  • Resilience.

Qualifications:

  • An enrolled solicitor with a full, post-qualified and unrestricted practising certificate from the Law Society of Scotland.

To Apply:

For a confidential discussion about this position, to request the full job description or to apply, please contact:

David Thomson, Director

Edinburgh: 0131 450 7164

Email: david@thomsonlrc.com 

 

Founder and Director of Thomson Legal Recruitment Company- award-winning legal consultant and a veteran of the legal recruitment market.

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