Valla becomes first Scottish company chosen to help transform UK legal sector through tech

Kate Ho and Danae Shell of Valla

Female-led Edinburgh startup selected for government-backed LawTech Sandbox, which fast-tracks innovative tech companies to reshape the legal sector

INNOVATIVE DIY law platform Valla has become the first Scottish company selected for the prestigious LawTech Sandbox – a government-backed technology initiative designed to transform the UK legal sector.

Female-led Edinburgh startup Valla – which aims to make legal support accessible and affordable for everyone, starting with unfair treatment at work – is one of just eight UK lawtech companies selected for the initiative, who are all changing the way that consumers and businesses interact with legal issues. 

The Lawtech Sandbox is the R&D environment of LawtechUK, a government-backed initiative within Tech Nation, established to support the transformation of the UK legal sector through technology, for the benefit of society and the economy.

By joining the Lawtech Sandbox, Valla will be able to fast-track the development of its  innovative DIY law platform, which aims to empower people to resolve employment issues themselves without spending thousands in legal fees. Using Valla, they can collect evidence, generate legal letters and navigate the legal processes – and when they need legal advice, they can connect with a lawyer through the Valla platform at an affordable fixed price.

Danae Shell, CEO and co-founder of Valla, said: “This is such an exciting step for us and we’re thrilled to be joining such a select group of companies in the Lawtech Sandbox. We’re excited to look at the regulatory implications of unbundling legal services with the Solicitors Regulation Authority, as well as examining how we could help support litigants in person in the courts process.

“So many people in the UK face injustice at work, especially those who are from a marginalised background. We’re committed to making it easier for them to have affordable legal help so they can challenge discrimination and unfair treatment, redress the balance of power, and get the justice they deserve.” 

Jenifer Swallow, LawtechUK Director at Tech Nation, added: “We are delighted to have chosen eight pioneering lawtechs across a range of target segments to take part in the Lawtech Sandbox, and look forward to wrapping around them the tools and community they need to deliver and thrive.”  

Joining the Lawtech Sandbox is the latest milestone achievement for Valla over the past 12 months. Earlier this year, company founders Danae Shell and Kate Ho were selected for Scotland’s flagship entrepreneurial leadership programme Unlocking Ambition, while the company was named as a Scotland winner in Tech Nation’s Rising Stars for 2020.

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