To help for the recognition and effective implementation of State Legal Aid legislation in Albania

Funded by the Open Society Foundation for Albania.

Duration: December 2018 – September 2019

The aim of the project is to improve access to justice for vulnerable categories, promoting the implementation of Law no. 111/2017 “On Legal Aid Guaranteed by the State” and its sub-legal acts. The specific objectives of the project are: 1. To raise stakeholder’awareness on the new legal standards and legal aid mechanisms guaranteed by the state, in accordance with Law no. 11/2017; 2. To improve the legal framework and enforcement of legislation on the provision of legal aid guaranteed by the state in accordance with the best standards and positive practices.

Results: AHC has published an awareness video, which provides information on undertaking concrete monitoring steps by AHC. With the involvement and professional assistance of 2 prominent field experts, AHC compiled the methodology for monitoring the scheme of functioning of primary legal aid services. AHC drafted 1 leaflet of awareness in the framework of providing primary legal assistance. With the engagement of two paralegals and the assistance of AHC local correspondents in 3 cities of the country (Durrës, Shkodër and Vlora), the primary legal aid service was provided to 260 citizens. Persons who are beneficiaries of the primary free legal aid scheme offered to this service constitute about ½ of the total number of citizens (124 citizens or about 47%). The paralegals have compiled 1 personalized database for each city, which provides categorized data of the treated complaint, provision of legal counseling, involvement of the complainant in the category of incomes and insufficient wealth, or direct beneficiary in scheme because of the special status. A partial preliminary report on monitoring the functioning of the primary free legal aid scheme, guaranteed by the state, has been drafted, which has been forwarded officially to the competent institutions. AHC has conducted 1 monitoring mission with the aim of providing citizens free legal aid services and conducting conversations with NGOs and Legal Clinic in the Public Universities. In the following months, 2 monitoring missions will be implemented in the cities in which this initiative is being implemented and one final report will be published in electronic format.

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