Law firm Watkins & Gunn has been shortlisted in the 2021 Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year awards.

The firm, which has offices in Newport, Pontypool and Cardiff, is a finalist in the Regional Legal Aid Firm/Not-for-Profit Agency category.

Watkins & Gunn has been shortlisted alongside Law Centre Northern Ireland, and Family Law Company, for its legal aid work over the last 12 months. The firm acts for Claimants in Human Rights, Judicial Review and Family Law cases and is involved in a number of high-profile inquests and public inquiries.

The 2021 ceremony will be held virtually on July 6.

Lucy O’Brien, associate and solicitor at Watkins & Gunn, said: “We are thrilled to have been shortlisted for this award. We are extremely proud of the work we do and the role we play in the legal aid sector. We have a responsibility to provide access to justice for all and being nominated for this award means a lot to the whole team.”

Michael Imperato, partner at Watkins & Gunn, said: “Legal aid is crucial for access to justice, particularly to ensure that the rule of law is upheld for vulnerable individuals, groups and communities. We are looking forward to the ceremony this year and would like to congratulate all those shortlisted for their hard work during what has been an incredibly turbulent year.”

Chris Minnoch, CEO of LAPG, which organises the awards on a not-for-profit basis to celebrate the work of social justice lawyers, said: “This year’s finalists give an insight in to the range, depth, and breadth of the incredible life-changing work that social justice lawyers do – and the vital role they play in ensuring access to justice for individuals, families, and communities. It is testimony to the importance of the LALY Awards to the legal aid sector that we had a bumper crop of compelling and inspiring nominations this year – despite the extreme pressures we are all facing due to the pandemic.”