Volunteer Court Advisor


Name: Volunteer Court Advisor
Organisation: CassPlus
Location: Plymouth Magistrates Court, St Andrews Street, Plymouth, Devon, PL1 2DP
Type: Part Time
Volunteer court advisors are expected to commit to at least 7 hrs per week.


As a Volunteer Court Advisor, you would provide free, impartial, and confidential signposting to clients who appear at Plymouth Magistrates Court on a wide range of issues. These issues can include; housing, family, alcohol/drugs, health/mental health, employment, education & training, benefits, and debts. CASS+ covers all offender pathways and is about offering sign-posting and advice on all relevant issues presented by this cohort. The volunteer court advisor is expected to commit to at least 7 hrs per week. We have a range of different roles so there will be something to suit your interests and which may appeal to prospective employers/universities in your chosen field.

The Service focuses primarily but not exclusively on offenders and their families. County Courts and Tribunals are now co-located at Magistrates' Courts and we provide support for people attending these non-criminal hearings. We consider ourselves to be experts in providing a new kind of service. We assist our clients to work out what problems they have most difficulty with. We listen, understand, advise and support without judgement. We work with our clients to ensure access to the services needed - whatever these might be - and we follow up as needed, so we keep on supporting our clients to better their lives.

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Organisation Description

CASSPLUS is a charity based at Plymouth Magistrates Court, Bodmin and Truro magistrates Court. The CASS+ desk is located within the court building and is staffed by staff and local volunteers who help to sign-post people involved with the Justice system to community resources. The service is targeted primarily at, but is not exclusive to, defendants whose offence is not serious enough to warrant a community order. Advice is given in a reasonably confidential setting, separated from the waiting area.
CASS+ provides advice and support in the courts to aid resettlement and reintegration with the aim of reducing offending. CASS+ works in partnership with local criminal justice agencies and communities. CASS+ also ensures that families and partners of prisoners are assisted at the point of sentence so they understand more about the court and prison systems and are better able to keep in touch.


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Cause / Interests

  • Domestic Violence
  • Homeless and Housing
  • Human and Civil Rights
  • Legal Aid and Justice

Types of Activity

  • Administration
  • Advice, Information and Support
  • Legal Work

Skills and Qualifications


• Good written English
• Reliability and punctuality
• Able to understand and empathize with the needs of the clients
• A commitment to the aims and principles of the CASS+ desk service
• Excellent communication skills both orally and in writing
• Being open and approachable
• Ability to sift through complex information and extract what is relevant
• Respect for views, values and cultures that are different to their own and treating all equally/fairly
• An understanding of why confidentiality is important
• Ability to use computers on a regular basis
• A positive attitude to self-development, assessment and training


From supporting people who offend, their families and victims, to increasing your skill set there are many reasons to volunteer for CASS+:

• Make a difference in your community
• Boost your confidence by learning new skills. You will receive training in: offering effective support and advice to clients, on the current Criminal Justice landscape, engagement and liaison with multi agencies, as well as expanding your knowledge of how criminal justice agencies work. On completion of any training, certificates will be provided
• Improve your employability and gain experience through working directly with criminal justice and health and social care providers
• Meet new people
• Being part of a friendly team
• Having fun
• Do something interesting with your spare time
• Give something back to your community

Additional/Specific Suitabilities

Minimum Age: 18
Maximum Age: NA
Disabled Access: Yes
Wheelchair Access: Yes
Expenses: Yes
Restrictions: NA
Induction: Yes
Insurance Cover: Yes
Special Needs: Yes
Offer: NA
Training: Yes
Other: NA

Recruitment Method

Application form, References, Trial Period, DBS Check, Interview