Skip to main content

Life in the Law study on mental health and wellbeing in the legal sector published

Life in the Law study on mental health and wellbeing in the legal sector published

25 November 2021

Professor Richard Collier of Newcastle Law School is a member of the Research Team behind the study Life in the Law launched on 28 September 2021. The research into mental health and wellbeing in the legal sector, the first of its kind in the UK, was carried out from October 2020 to January 2021 and over 1,700 professionals from the UK, Republic of Ireland, Jersey, Guernsey, and the Isle of Man took part. The aim of the research was to take a snapshot of the mental health and wellbeing of the legal profession and help inform future steps the profession must collectively take to improve the culture and practice of law to better support wellbeing. 

The research found that: 

  • Legal professionals surveyed were at high risk of burnout, associated with having a high workload, working long hours, and a psychologically unsafe working environment. 
  • 69% of legal professionals experienced mental ill-health in the 12 months preceding the survey, but only half of them had talked about it at work. 
  • 1 in 5 legal professionals surveyed have been bullied, harassed, or discriminated against. 
  • Things that could make a difference:  Provide management training, regular catch-ups, work towards a psychologically safe and supportive workplace. 
  • The culture and practice of law needs to change. Improving mental wellbeing is all of our responsibility.  


You can view the full report, our press release, and download Life in the Law communications materials at

Prof Richard Collier has expanded on some of the aspects of the report in an article for the Law Society Gazette titled 'Worklife, Wellbeing and Mental Health: Bringing men into the frame'