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International Study of Primary Legal Aid Systems with the Focus on the Countries of Central and Eastern Europe and CIS

By: Anna Ogorodova, UNDP

This study examines the primary legal aid systems of a number of European countries, with the special focus on the countries of Central and Eastern Europe and former CIS. The countries covered in the review are: Georgia, Hungary, Moldova, Lithuania, Netherlands and Russia. Besides, examples are drawn from other countries which have a longstanding experience in organizing primary legal aid, for instance the United Kingdom or Canada. The review aims to provide recommendations to the government of Ukraine on how it can improve the organization and delivery of primary legal aid services. Another objective of the study is to develop recommendations to UNDP and other development actors as to how they could support the Ukrainian government in attaining this goal. The following elements of the primary legal aid systems in the countries covered by the study are examined: management of primary legal aid; primary legal aid providers; scope and eligibility for primary legal aid and the procedure for the provision of such aid; as well as approaches to the funding of primary legal aid. Where relevant, comparisons are made with the Ukrainian situation.