Please get in touch with cpd@lawscot.org.uk to express your interest in future courses

Please email the above address to add your name to a waiting list for future runnings of the course.

Trauma-awareness and trauma-informed practice are increasingly at the heart of a fair justice system. This course is designed for all solicitors working with people, no matter their practice area (whether it’s criminal law, family and child law, personal injury, succession and estate planning, conveyancing etc.) and is suitable for all levels of expertise.

In becoming trauma-informed, you will learn to recognise the impact of trauma in those you work for and with, and to be able to practice in a way that does no further harm, supports recovery and is most effective and efficient for people affected by trauma. Just as importantly, you will understand the ways that you can adapt your approach to legal practice and communication skills to take account of the impact of trauma in order to work effectively with colleagues and clients, including minimising the risks of re-traumatisation while also preserving your own wellbeing against vicarious trauma.

If you are interested in training on autism, please look at these courses run by Scottish Autism - https://www.scottishautism.org/events-training-consultancy/online-training

 This course is priced at £660 + VAT and consists of 20 hours verifiable CPD.*

*Becoming a trauma-informed lawyer is an increasingly essential competency. This is more important than ever at a time when growing emphasis is placed towards the development of a trauma-informed justice workforce that needs to be able to both improve the experiences of victims and witnesses, and to ensure a fair justice system for the accused.

With this in mind, we created this course at a lower rate than our other certification courses to reflect our ambition to increase awareness among our members about the importance of trauma awareness in all areas of law, while also to provide any solicitors working with people with the tools to elevate their client care skills.

2021 Live Seminar Dates (SOLD OUT)
Date Location Webinar
Wednesday 10 November, 2 - 4pm Online Introduction to Trauma and Trauma-Informed Practice for Lawyers
Wednesday 17 November, 2 - 4pm Online Trauma in Practice
Wednesday 24 November 9.30am - 12.30pm Online Vulnerable Witnesses and Vulnerable Accused
Wednesday 1 December, 2 - 4pm Online Lived Experience Workshop
Wednesday 8 December, 2 - 4.30pm Online The Ethics and Skills of Trauma-Informed Lawyers
Date TBC Online Final assignment deadline

Sign-in and book now

Discover how you can become one of our first certified specialists in trauma-informed practice.
Course trainers
Psychologist and Head of Trauma , Scottish Government
Partner, Keegan Smith; and Scottish Lawyer of the Year 2020
Director, Rutherford Sheridan
Associate, Gibson Kerr, and Accredited Specialist in Family and Child Law
Psychotherapist, Scottish Violence Reduction Unit
Solicitor & Director, Tony Bone Legal
Advocate, Optimum Advocates
University Teacher in Applied Custodial Leadership, SSHS: Psychology, Criminology & Sociology, Trinity University
Legal Officer, CYPCS
Witness Support Officer & Statement Taker, Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry

Our certified course follows a blended learning approach of online independent learning modules and live online training delivered by experts.

  1. Sign up for the certified course.
  2. Complete introductory pre-materials (trauma skilled e-module and coercive control) for 3 hours verifiable CPD.
  3. Attend six live online webinars for 15.5 hours CPD.
  4. Certification as Trauma-Informed Lawyer awarded with use of our marque.
Course components
Trauma Skilled e-module

This module, from NHS Education for Scotland, consists of five units, and takes around 1.5-3 hours to complete. It is designed to increase your understanding of what psychological trauma is and how it can affect us, how to support recovery and develop trauma informed relationships that incorporate trust, safety, choice and collaboration, and control and empowerment, and how to recognise when a person may benefit from a trauma specialist intervention

3 hours verifiable CPD

Coercive Control and the Law - A Trauma Informed Approach module

Complete this module, we collaborated with Scottish Government and other stakeholders to develop trauma informed training for solicitors. Trauma informed knowledge is essential to elevate your client care skills within many practice areas including Family law, Criminal law, Child law and Personal Injury.

You can find the resources and complete the quiz to gain 1 hour verifiable CPD here

Ahead of the 'Vulnerable witnesses and vulnerable accused seminar',you should watch the below three videos

  1. Trauma and Credibilty (9 mins)
  2. Re-traumatisation and Trauma Informed Approaches (6 mins)
  3. Window of Tolerance (7 mins) 
  4. Warriors by Stephen Bennett (60 mins)

All of the videos are accessible through Vimeo, please follow the links above to access each video. 

Seminar One: Introduction to trauma and trauma-informed practice for lawyers

Trainer: Dr. Caroline Bruce, Principal Educator at NHS Education for Scotland, Clinical Psychologist and Honorary Senior Lecturer (Institute of Health & Wellbeing) at University of Glasgow

Ahead of this seminar, you should complete the following training:

  1. Trauma Skilled e-module (3 hours verifiable CPD)
  2. Coercive Control and the Law - A Trauma Informed Approach module (1 hour verifiable CPD)
  • Recap and discussion of key points from skilled module integrated into legal practice
Seminar Two: Trauma in Practice

Trainers:

Iain Smith, Partner, Keegan Smith
Melissa Rutherford, Director, Rutherford Sheridan
Nadine Martin, Associate, Gibson Kerr, and Accredited Specialist in Family and Child Law

During this seminar, trauma-informed lawyers working in different practice areas will discuss their journey and what brought them to become trauma aware, as well as their experience of working with clients who have suffered from trauma. You will hear about:

  • The judicial response to date, the sentencing guidelines, what needs to be done
  • What practitioners do and should do
Seminar Three: Vulnerable Witnesses and Vulnerable Accused

Trainers:

Claire Mitchell QC
Maria Galli, Legal Officer, CYPCS

Dr. Caroline Bruce, Principal Educator at NHS Education for Scotland, Clinical Psychologist and Honorary Senior Lecturer (Institute of Health & Wellbeing) at University of Glasgow
Rosemary M. Guinnane, Advocate, Optimum Advocates

Ahead of the 'Vulnerable witnesses and vulnerable accused seminar', you should watch the below three videos

  1. Trauma and Credibilty (9 mins)
  2. Re-traumatisation and Trauma Informed Approaches (6 mins)
  3. Window of Tolerance (7 mins) 
  • Defining and assessing vulnerability in relation to trauma (Dr. Caroline Bruce)
  • Children as vulnerable witnesses (Maria Galli)
  • Dealing with children in court: evidence on commission of children (Rosemary M. Guinnane)
  • Dealing with vulnerable witnesses: best practice and advocacy skills for civil and criminal law practitioners (Claire Mitchell QC)
Seminar Four: Lived Experience Workshop

Trainers:

Iain Smith, Partner, Keegan Smith
Melissa Rutherford, Director, Rutherford Sheridan
Kirsty Giles, Psychotherapist, Scottish Violence Reduction Unit
Nadine Martin, Associate, Gibson Kerr, and Accredited Specialist in Family and Child Law
Andrew Brierley, University Teacher in Applied Custodial Leadership, SSHS: Psychology, Criminology & Sociology, Trinity University
Janithia McCourt, Witness Support Officer and Statement Taker, Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry

This module will consist of two parts:

  1. Pre-recorded content on lived experience to watch on demand
    - 'Warriors' by Stephen Bennett (60 mins)
    - 'Wisdom of Trauma' (released during course)
Seminar Five: The Ethics and Skills of Trauma-Informed Lawyers

Trainers:

Iain Smith, Partner, Keegan Smith
Melissa Rutherford, Director, Rutherford Sheridan
Tony Bone, Solicitor & Director, Tony Bone Legal
Kirsty Giles, Psychotherapist, Scottish Violence Reduction Unit
Nadine Martin, Associate, Gibson Kerr, and Accredited Specialist in Family and Child Law

During this seminar, you will discuss:

  • Enhancing your client engagement and communication skills: adapt your initial engagement and litigation approach to minimize re-traumatisation
  • Recognising and applying legal ethics when working with traumatised clients
  • Vicarious trauma – supporting and protecting your own wellbeing
Trauma-informed lawyering: looking abroad 

Access to private study materials on this topic will be provided to those on the course. 

1.5 hours verifiable CPD.

There will be a final assignment for the course, details will be provided in due course.