Tag Archives: benefits

Trainee placement at Nottingham Law Centre continues

Elliott Moulster, a Trainee Solicitor in the Firm’s Regulatory Department, has been seconded to Nottingham Law Centre.  A post about his experiences during his first week can be found here.

During weeks two and three of the placement, Elliott had to work around existing commitments to his regulatory work, including time spent at the Crown Court in Newcastle-upon-Tyne for the beginning of a complex Health and Safety Executive prosecution.

Having instilled confidence in those supervising him at the Law Centre, he has been given much more responsibility and independence.  First thing in the morning he is greeted with a pile of files to review and progress.  The work will include

  • contacting clients to discuss their cases
  • chasing up replies from the Department of Work and Pensions
  • corresponding with employers, medical practitioners and varius other individuals and bodies in order to take forward benefit claims.

One of Elliott’s more complex pieces of work to date has been drafting submissions for a client’s appeal to the Upper Appeals Tribunal. The case being appealed concerned a client’s request for Employment & Support Allowance.  This had been refused by the DWP and the First Tier Social Security Tribunal.

The Law Centre believed that these decisions were in error, and therefore were supporting their client’s appeal.  The point of law was relatively complicated, relating to EU and immigration law.  Elliott found this a fascinating piece of work to be involved in.

Elliott has also been conducting his own interviews with clients, albeit under the direct supervision of Diana Bagci.  For example, he met with a client to obtain instructions to draft an application for a Personal Indepence Payment.  He ascertained the client’s health difficulties and how his life was affected on a daily basis.  Such conversations clearly involve a high degree of sensitivity and professionalism.

Finally, Elliott has used the opportunity of working at the Law Centre to continue to be involved in the local community.  He has continued to help at the Law Centre’s local support sessions for the Roma community.

He was also invited to another community forum.  On this occasion it was to discuss the local provisions for those suffering from trauma.

Elliott attended as a representative of the Law Centre at a local community careers fair.  This was attended and enjoyed by many.

With two more weeks to go of his secondment, Elliott is keen to see what new challenges are thrown at him.

Follow this link to the Nottingham Law Centre web site to find out more about its work and to make a donation.

Trainee Solicitor at Nottingham Law Centre

As part of his training, trainee solicitor Elliott Moulster has been seconded to work at the Nottingham Law Centre in order to obtain a broad range of experience prior to qualification.

This firm enjoys a close relationship with the Nottingham Law Centre.  Solicitor Andrew Wesley is the chair of the Board of Trustees for the Law Centre, responsible for oversight and some strategic management, in a pro bono role.

nottingham law centreNottingham Law Centre is located directly opposite the Hyson Green Market in Radford, Nottingham.  It specialises in providing free legal advice and representation in the areas of housing law, debt and social security law.  As a result, it advisers try to assist some of the most vulnerable in society.

Elliott has begun to work alongside Diana Bagci who is part of the Law Centre’s Social Security Team, providing particular assistance to the local Roma community.

Elliott has now spent his first week in this busy not for profit organisation.


The week started with introductions to everyone who works and volunteers at the Centre.   Elliott received the warmest of welcomes from everybody that he met.

Before being trusted with providing advice, Elliott began to receive his training.  He had the opportunity to sit in on many client appointments.  What impressed him most about this first day was  the professionalism and empathy that staff members showed when dealing with cases that were both deeply personal and of extreme sensitivity.


After spending Monday meeting clients and advisers, Elliott spent much of Tuesday at Nottingham Law Centre reading some of the relevant law and guidance relating to benefits.

He acquainted himself with the regulations concerning the Employment Support Allowance (ESA), Job Seekers Allowance (JSA) and the rules surrounding other benefits such as Universal Credit.

Elliott had further opportunities to sit in on further client interviews during the course of the day.


Elliott attended a meeting about combating modern slavery in the East Midlands.   This event opened his eyes to the prevalence of such practises in the United Kingdom.  This valuable insight will allow Elliott to help understand the experience of those clients who are victims of modern slavery.

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The first half of Thursday was spent drafting a detailed letter to the Social Security Tribunal. The purpose of this letter was to make representations in support of an application to reconsider a previous decision of the tribunal.  It was believed that the tribunal decision was in error, but that the problem could be rectified.

In the afternoon, Elliott attended a local Community Centre. This was to offer practical advice and assistance to members of the local Roma Community.  Again, he found the experience very educational.  He experienced a culture in some ways different to his own, and appreciated the opportunity to provide advice away from an office setting speaking directly to those in the community.


Unfortunately Elliott was unable to avoid returning to VHS Fletchers today to prepare some of Health and Safety prosecutions that he is working on.  He will, however, return to Nottingham Law Centre next week to begin to provide advice.

Contact Nottingham Law Centre

While we are able to provide you with specialist advice relating to crime, regulatory, road traffic, education and prison law matters, we cannot give you advice on all topics.

As a result, if you require advice about housing law, debt or benefits entitlement then we do not hesitate to recommend the excellent service provided by the Law Centre.

Information about how to contact the Law Centre can be found here.