Access to legal advice for disabled people

Round 1 – 2024

Now closed for applications – the deadline for applications was 12th January 2024.

This is a new programme to increase capacity for legal advice and advocacy for disabled people on:

  • Benefits and debt
  • Housing and homelessness
  • Community care
  • Personal liberty
  • Equal access to goods and services

As a starting point, we will take applications from not-for-profit organisations that meet one of the following standards:

  • Lexel accreditation
  • Legal Aid Agency Specialist Quality Mark
  • Advice Quality Standard
  • Money and Pensions Service Debt Advice Quality Framework
  • Accredited by the Scottish Legal Aid Board to provide Type 2 (casework) or Type 3 (advocacy, representation and mediation at a tribunal or court action level) advice
  • Northern Ireland Advice Quality Standard

If you are applying with a partner or as a network of organisations: the lead applicant must meet one of these standards.

If you plan to achieve one of these standards as part of the work you want to fund: please show this in your application.

We expect to broaden the programme’s scope after the first round.

We have earmarked a total of £1.5 million for the first round of grants. The maximum annual grant will be £50,000 a year. Grants can run for 1-3 years.

There are no restrictions on what resources the grant can be used to pay for provided the funding furthers access to justice for disabled people.

Grants in this programme will be considered by a panel of 10-12 people with lived experience of disability or learned experience of law.

This programme is for work that helps people in England, Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland.

What we won’t fund

  • Large national charities
  • SEND advice and advocacy
  • Immigration advice
  • Work outside the UK

How can I apply?

If you provide legal advice and advocacy in at least one of the listed areas, meet at least one of the quality standards for advice and wish to apply, please email Please include your name, the name of your organisation, your role there, and your email address. A phone number is helpful.

Local networks of organisations can apply provided the lead organisation meets one of the quality standards.

We will send you an application form and guidance notes.

What information will I need provide?

In your application we will ask you for:

  • Contact and organisational information
  • Some yes/no questions on governance, safeguarding and quality of advice
  • How people you help, and disabled people in particular, can contribute to the governance, management, delivery and development of your work (up to 100 words)
  • A summary of your project in one sentence (a project title)
  • One main outcome for the grant and how you will measure this
  • A description what you plan to do and why, the communities you will work with, how it will benefit disabled people and how it will complement other activities that you or other organisations provide (up to 300 words)
  • A budget summary
  • When you expect to begin spending a grant

We will need a copy of these documents or a link to a where they can be found online:

  • Current safeguarding policy
  • Latest audited accounts or financial statement
  • Optional: a detailed budget

Dates and deadlines

  • Opening date: 21st November 2023
  • Closing date: 12th January 2024
  • Shortlisted applications go to grants panel: 9th February 2024
  • Grant decisions released: 27th March 2024

Last updated: 15 January 2024.