Half of us rely on TV drama for legal knowledge, according to local law firm
Almost half of the public (47%) get most of their legal knowledge from TV programmes, films, magazines, newspapers, and online, according to an online YouGov survey commissioned by local Chester QualitySolicitors branch, Oliver & Co.
More Northerners cited the Internet (16%) as their top source of legal information than any other source, closely followed by schools/ university (15%) and then TV programmes and Films (14%). In total, 43% of Northerners rely on TV programmes, films, magazines, newspapers, and the Internet for most of their legal knowledge – this figure was the least of all the regions in Great Britain and below the national average of 47%.
The survey showed that 15% of Northerners said they got most of their legal information from school or University. Meanwhile, legal experts ranked last on the survey as a source for legal knowledge with just 7% saying they got most of their legal information from them.
The results follow the UK’s first televised sentencing in a criminal court for broadcast the same day. During the sentencing at the High Court in Edinburgh, David Gilroy was sentenced to 18 years in prison for murdering his former lover and colleague, Suzanne Pilley, 38.
The initial decision to televise proceedings prompted prominent QC, Brian McConnachie QC, vice-chair of the Faculty of Advocates Criminal Bar Association, to note that the public get most legal knowledge from TV drama. QualitySolicitors commissioned research from YouGov to find out if this was true.
Director of QualitySolicitors Oliver & Co, David Owen says: “Only 9% of the British public said that most of their legal knowledge came from legal experts, which goes to show how far removed consumers are from the legal profession in the UK. At the moment, 47% of British consumers are relying on TV programmes, films, magazines, newspapers, and the Internet, for legal knowledge which, although entertaining, can result in confusion. Whether televised court proceedings will change this or not, legal processes must change to help make legal information and advice accessible to all.”
QualitySolicitors aims to revolutionise legal services, giving people local advice they can trust with the reassurance that comes from a single, national brand.
David Owen explains: “We want to make going to your local solicitor as simple and straightforward as going to the supermarket, and tackle people’s apprehensions about seeking legal advice, which can seem a daunting and stuffy process. QualitySolicitors’ mission is to provide consumer-friendly legal services through expert, leading local law firms - not unqualified staff in remote call centres.”
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