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Lawyers pledge free support to businesses firefighting through pandemic

PUBLISHED: 04:37 17 June 2020

Mike Fisher from Resin Master in Rendlesham receiving free legal advice from the Prettys team on overcoming coronavirus crisis challenges  Picture: PRETTYS

Mike Fisher from Resin Master in Rendlesham receiving free legal advice from the Prettys team on overcoming coronavirus crisis challenges Picture: PRETTYS

Prettys

A law firm is offering regional businesses a £250k lifeline as they struggle to get to grips with fallout from the coronavirus pandemic.

The 80-strong team at Ipswich-based Prettys solicitors is pledging support for firms in Essex, Norfolk and Suffolk by offering free advice on difficulties they face under a new pro bono scheme called Covid Assist.

Experts will help employers negotiate restructures and redundancies, corporate property disputes, insolvency and debt recovery, health and safety and risk assessment requirements and contract terminations and employment tribunal claims under the programme.

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Chief executive Ian Carr said the pandemic had left a lot of businesses firefighting.

“Many are having to confront a lot of very tough questions about how they can continue to operate, how to cut costs and how to navigate new legislation and this is causing a bit of a stressful time for employers who are having to make fast decisions and drastic changes they feel ill-prepared for,” he said.

Without the right advice, they could face very challenging, time-consuming and expensive legal battles in the months and years ahead, threatening their survival, he said.

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“With this in mind, we wanted to do something to help companies in the area to access some help free of charge before they decide on next steps.”

Solicitors at Prettys have pledged to set aside an hour of their time each day to do the pro bono work – at the cost of a quarter of a million pounds to the company.

The offer is only open to East Anglian businesses, who are invited to apply for a one hour slot for legal matters relating to the pandemic and join free webinars.

“Our business experts are primed to provide specialist advice on corporate and commercial, property, employment and commercial disputes,” said Mr Carr.

Questions could include business contracts, restructuring, employment matters or disputes that have arisen because of the pandemic, he said.

“We have always played a key role in the wider business community in the East and this is our way of giving something back during a time when businesses might need us most.”

The offer is available until the end of July. To reserve a consultation email covidassist@prettys.co.uk or complete the application form here.

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