Italian Pro Bono Roundtable

22 February 2016

Italian Pro Bono Roundtable

In April 2014, PILnet started the Italian Pro Bono Roundtable to create new public space where lawyers, law firms, and companies can interact and cooperate with Italian NGOs and civil society. We have held 20 Roundtable meetings to date. The Roundtable has provided space for 30 Italian NGOs to present their work, discuss strategies and engage lawyers and law firms in cooperation on pro bono basis. We are continuing the roundtable project with meetings 2017.

Upcoming Meetings: The 21st Italian Pro Bono Roundtable

The 21st Italian Pro Bono Roundtable will take place on 20 September 2017 in Milan, Italy. It will be hosted by Macchi di Cellere Gangemi. The address is: 

Macchi di Cellere Gangemi Studio Legale
Via G. Serbelloni 4
20122 Milan

Please note that the Roundtable will start at 12:30 pm and will end at 14:30 pm CET. 

It is important that you confirm your presence using this link: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/21st-italian-pro-bono-roundtable-tickets-34718503980

 

Italian Pro Bono Definition

The following definition of pro bono has been drafted and adopted by the Italian Pro Bono Roundtable to clarify what pro bono means in the local context and to guide the work of the Roundtable. Click here to download a PDF version of the definition

Premessa

Il termine ‘Pro Bono’ deriva dalla frase in Latino “pro bono publico” che vuole significare, attività resa per il bene pubblico.

Vi sono differenti definizioni di Pro Bono, che dipendono dalla storia e dal sistema giuridico di ciascun paese e dalle norme deontologiche cui sono soggetti gli scritti alla professione legale, e secondo i compiti che si prefiggono le organizzazioni che promuovono servizi legali nell’interesse pubblico per chi è bisognoso.

Il nostro intento non è quello di trovare una definizione di Pro Bono che possa essere universalmente accettata, ma riteniamo utile descrivere gli scopi e i limiti dell’attività legale che gli avvocati italiani, iscritti negli ordini professionali, possono decidere volontariamente di perseguire, individualmente o in forma associata, a beneficio di enti meritevoli di ricevere supporto legale o di persone che non possono permettersi di pagare l’assistenza legale o non abbiano diritto al patrocinio gratuito.

Tale attività, che consideriamo compresa nella definizione di Pro Bono che PILnet appoggia, si vuole che escluda qualunque assistenza legale fornita da un avvocato a fini di lucro, come qualunque prestazione resa ai sensi delle norme sul gratuito patrocinio che assicurano accesso alla giustizia, e non deve essere confusa con i servizi di beneficienza in genere, sponsorizzazione, raccolta fondi per o sostegno finanziario a organizzazioni che forniscono servizi legali a persone con mezzi limitati.

Definizione

Con attività Pro Bono s’intende la prestazione lavorativa strettamente volontaria, resa non a fini di lucro ma gratuitamente, che un avvocato svolge facendo affidamento sulle sue capacità professionali, su base non discriminatoria, e sotto la sua valutazione e responsabilità personale, in ottemperanza, tra gli altri, delle leggi, regolamenti e norme deontologiche applicabili che disciplinano lo svolgimento dell’assistenza e consulenza legale e la rappresentanza in giudizio, a favore di:

  • Organizzazioni non lucrative, opere pie, organizzazioni non governative, centri sociali ed enti pubblici o privati che hanno come finalità:
    • l’assistenza alle persone in ambito sanitario, sociale, ambientale o culturale; oppure
    • garantire l’accesso alla giustizia; oppure
    • il progresso del bene pubblico in generale; e

  • Soggetti svantaggiati che:
    • non hanno mezzi economici sufficienti per pagare i normali onorari necessari ad ottenere il livello di assistenza legale indipendente e senza compromessi del quale hanno bisogno; oppure
    • non soddisfano i requisiti per avvalersi del patrocinio gratuito, o comunque non hanno modo di adire tribunali o avere accesso alla giustizia.

Dal carattere gratuito della prestazione Pro Bono consegue che ai clienti non viene addebitata parcella per i compensi degli avvocati, così come le spese ordinarie (come ad es., fotocopie, fax, telefonate e corrispondenza postale) sostenute nel corso della prestazione professionale resa, ad eccezione delle spese straordinarie (come ad es., spese di viaggio, corrieri espressi o mezzi di indagine e ricerca), che saranno sostenute dai legali con il preventivo assenso del cliente.

 

 

 

 

 

Premise

The term ‘Pro Bono’ originates from the Latin phrase “pro bono publico” which means, activity carried out for the public good.

There are different definitions of Pro Bono, depending on each country’s history and legal system and the bar rules applicable to the members of the legal profession, as well as the aims of the organizations that are promoting public interest legal work for those in need.

While it is not our scope to find a definition of Pro Bono that can be universally accepted, we deemed helpful to describe the purpose and boundaries of certain legal activity which Italian lawyers, members of the local Bars, may voluntarily decide to carry out, as a sole practitioner or in associated form, for the benefit of entities worth receiving legal support or individuals that cannot afford paying for their legal assistance or may not be eligible receiving legal aid.

This activity, which we will consider falling under the definition of Pro Bono supported by PILnet, is to be intended to exclude any legal assistance provided by a lawyer for profit, any activity already regulated by applicable laws and falling under a governmental system of “legal aid” granting access to justice, and shall not be confused with any generic charitable service, sponsorship, funding or financial support to organizations that provide legal services to persons of limited means.

Definition

Pro Bono activity shall mean the strictly voluntary, not for profit and gratuitous professional activity that a lawyer undertakes resorting on his/her legal skills, on a non discriminatory basis, but under his/her personal judgment and responsibility, and in compliance with, inter alia, the applicable laws, regulations and bar rules governing the performance of legal advice, assistance and/or representation, in favor of:

  • Non-profit organizations, charitable entities, non-governmental organizations, community centers and private or public entities having as purpose:
    • the pursue of health, social, environmental or cultural assistance to the people; or
    • ensuring access to justice; or
    • the benefit of the public good in general; and

  • Disadvantaged individuals that:
    • have no sufficient economic means to pay the customary fees for independent and uncompromised quality legal assistance they may be in need of; or
    • have no access to legal aid or to the courts and the legal system.

The gratuitous character of the Pro Bono activity means that clients are not charged the lawyers’ fees, as well as the ordinary expenses (e.g., photocopying, fax, telephone and mail) incurred for the performance of the professional activity required, except for any extraordinary costs (e.g., travel expenses, express couriers and legal investigation or search tools), which are incurred by the lawyers with the prior consent of the client.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Previous Meetings

Roundtable Participants: Law Firms and Lawyers

Roundtable Participants: NGOs

Association Pro Bono Italia

FIRST PRO BONO ASSOCIATION OF LAWYERS LAUNCHED IN ITALY (18 May 2017) 

Pro Bono Italia was launched yesterday as the first association of lawyers, law firms and forensic associations with the goal of promoting and spreading a pro bono culture throughout Italy.

Among the founders of Pro Bono Italia: ASLA, Albé e Associati, Carotenuto Studio Legale, Casella e Associati, Walter De Agostino, De Berti Jacchia Franchini Forlani, Dentons, Hogan Lovells, Marina Ingrasci', Legance, Macchi di Cellere Gangemi, Quintavalle & Riva and White & Case.

Notarial aspects were handled by Giovannella Condò of Milan Notai.

Pro Bono Italia will endeavour to fosteran open dialogue between lawyers, non-profit organisations, clearing-houses and legal clinics operating nationally and abroad. It intends to organise training activities on legal, social and cultural matters and facilitate the performance of pro bono services. The association will also cooperate with local, national and International Bar associations and other institutions to promote the approval of laws, regulations, codes and ethical standards instrumental to the development of pro bono in Italy.

Pro Bono Italia will be chaired by Giovanni Carotenuto, former partner at Orrick and founder of Carotenuto Studio Legale, and Stefano Macchi di Cellere, head of the London office of Macchi di Cellere Gangemi. Other members of the Board of Directors are Valentina Casella, partner at Casella e Associati, and Atanas Politov, formerly responsible for PILnet in Europe and currently Europe Director for Pro Bono at Dentons.

Many of the founders have actively participated in, and continue to support, the Italian Pro Bono Roundtable (www.pilnet.org/italy), a network of legal professionals, lawyers and non-profit associations established by PILnet (The Global Network for Public Interest Law) in April 2014. The Roundtable holds regular meetings in Rome and Milan and organises support for the European Pro Bono Forum, held for the first time in Rome in November 2015.

 

 

About PILnet

PILnet envisions a world where law delivers justice. We connect and equip lawyers to protect human rights, advance social justice and defend the most vulnerable. PILnet has two core strategies: training, supporting and collaborating with public interest lawyers on a global scale and strengthening the global pro bono community. Our approach is to connect and collaborate with partners to create globally-available resources that make local public advocacy more effective. While PILnet’s reach is worldwide, our innovating strategies are driven by local actors.

Strengthening Public Interest Lawyers

PILnet strengthens the effectiveness of public interest lawyers around the world through fellowships, training programs and other special initiatives. We provide unique connections andresources to global networks of like-minded advocates. For example, our international Fellows program has transformed the lives and careers of more than 100 leading public interest lawyers from 36 countries. Our Fellows work on a wide range of issues from protecting economic and social rights, to addressing climate change, LGBTI rights and human trafficking.

Building the Global Pro Bono Community

PILnet is leading the way in a global effort to build pro bono communities locally in order to strengthen civil society and ensure access to justice. PILnet has linked together a global network of pro bono clearinghouses – including its own pioneering initiatives in Asia, Europe and West Africa – which connect law firms and corporations as pro bono service providers with NGOs and individuals in need of legal assistance. Further, PILnet widens and deepens the global pro bono community through convening annual Pro Bono Forums in Europe and Asia bringing together the key actors in those regions. As global pro bono culture grows around the world, PILnet is creating resources that make local advocacy more effective.

 

PILnet's Pro Bono Forum

PILnet Global Forum 16 - 19 October 2017, Budapest

Law can be a powerful tool for justice but it does not deliver justice automatically. Around the world today, law is being used to maintain inequality, to legitimize the quietening of civil society organizations and to hinder human rights defenders that challenge the
status quo. The 2017 PILnet Global Forum will focus on how we, as a global network, can reclaim law as a force for good and find ways to collaborate in making law work for all.

Bringing together the expertise and networks of PILnet’s European, Russian and Asian Forums for the first time, the 2017 Global Forum will give local innovation a global stage. It will connect leading activists, academics, pro bono professionals and public interest law champions from around the world to share the most effective techniques and skills of both the public and private legal profession to benefit the public interest.

REGISTER FOR THE FORUM