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Regulation on Paralegals, Republic of Moldova (Romanian)

The Regulation on paralegals was adopted by the National Legal Aid Council on 2011/06/15 and was published on 2012/01/13. The regulation defines a paralegal as a person highly respected by the local community, with incomplete legal studies or complete higher education / tertiary education, who is not practicing as a lawyer and who, after a special training, is qualified to provide primary state guaranteed legal aid to the community members, paid by the state budget.

The regulation further establishes the rules regarding the selection and hiring of paralegals, the rules for providing primary legal aid by the paralegals, the relations of the paralegals with the National Legal Aid Council and its Territorial Offices, as well as the process of quality assurance of primary legal aid, reporting rules, monitoring and evaluation of paralegals.

To date, there are only 30 paralegals in Moldova that were funded by the Soros Foundation-Moldova with the support of Swedish Government (Sida) during a pilot project in 2010-2011. For 2012 the Soros Foundation-Moldova and HRGGP of the OSI are supporting 15 paralegals out of the 30. No state funds have yet been committed to primary legal aid for 2012, but efforts are on-going in that respect.

The regulation only refers to paralegal’s role as “primary legal aid provider”, leaving outside other “community empowering” activities that were piloted during the pilot project. The regulation has a general clause regarding the paralegals’ training, namely to be ensured by the National Legal Aid Council. The training and accreditation scheme still needs to be developed. The regulation is quite detailed regarding the monitoring and evaluation of paralegals. It remains to be seen how practical it is. Overall the regulation is a good step to advance the establishment of paralegals in Moldova.

Resource Tags

Resource Type: Practitioner Resources Issues: Community Paralegals, Generalist Legal Services Tool Type: Laws, Policies & Legal Analysis Languages: Romanian Regions: Europe