HEP Pro Bono Services: More, Bigger, Better

HEP Pro Bono Services: More, Bigger, Better
30 Oct 2012

“Pro Bono” (“pro bono publico,” from the Latin, “for the public good.”) It’s a tradition of service. . .giving back to society. . .ensuring fair, equal access to professional skills for those who need them most, but can least afford them.

For Mr. Harry Elias S C, founder of Harry Elias Partnership LLP, the roots of public service date to 1985, when he helped establish the Law Society of Singapore’s Criminal Legal Aid Scheme and served as its Founding Chairman.

Today, there is increasing difficulty inducing lawyers in Singapore to offer pro bono work (in January, Chief Justice Chan Sek Keong urged the nation’s lawyers to assume more such cases).  Heeding that call, and underlining its commitment to “working for the good of all,” HEP has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Law Society of Singapore’s Pro Bono Services Office (PBSO) to support pro bono initiatives in unprecedented ways. The formal agreement marks the first time that a law firm in Singapore (the firm as an entity, beyond its individual lawyers), has committed to provide more structured support to enhance the effectiveness of the pro bono programmes of PBSO. In so doing, HEP established a specified number of hours’ contribution of pro bono work--a minimum of 25 hours a year--by each of its lawyers.

Mr Philip Fong, Managing Partner of HEP, commented on the agreement, “The idea to support the Pro Bono efforts of the Law Society makes sense as we would be able to direct resources to further the worthy causes that are already identified by (them).”

The MOU commitment is for an initial period of three years. Mr. Francis Goh, senior partner at HEP, said of the announcement, “HEP has pro bono service in its DNA. So the collaboration between PBSO and HEP is a natural progression in our history of contributing back to society. . .the firm is already being actively organized to be involved in several PBSO projects.”

The firm’s involvement was reported by The Business Times, Straits Times, and other publications.


For more information, please contact our Business Development Manager, Ricky Soetikno at rickysoetikno@eversheds-harryelias.com