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  • Dr. Stefanie Lemke

Mission accomplished: Europe's first guidelines on legal aid

The guidelines on legal aid were adopted in 2021 to help the Council of Europe’s 47 member states to improve the functioning of their legal aid systems.

Legal aid is vital to ensure your right to a fair trial. Legal problems, left unaddressed, can severely impact your livelihood. Countries around the world have therefore developed legal aid programmes to help you defend your rights and close the justice gap between people who have sufficient means to pay for a lawyer and those who do not.

In Europe, the guidelines on legal aid are an important milestone, being the very first legal instrument for legal aid provision in the areas of civil and administrative law. The guidelines provide generic solutions to policy makers to reform and improve legal aid services. They also include an explanatory memorandum for everyone who is interested in learning more about legal aid and best practices of legal aid which exist in Council of Europe member states.

Stefanie Lemke, Council of Europe Guidelines on Legal Aid


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