A SCOTS RAF officer and solicitor is launching a scheme to help members of the Armed Forces receive discounts of a third off their legal fees.

Allan Steele is behind Armed Forces Legal Action (AFLA), which aims to help serving personnel and those who have left the army within two years if they need legal assistance.

It aims to extend lifetime legal cover to personnel who have sustained serious combat injuries, recipients of the Victoria Cross, the George Cross and bereaved next of kin recipients of the Elizabeth Cross. Wing Commander Steele, who is stationed in the Netherlands, said: "Armed Forces personnel have told me many times over the years when they use a solicitor they pay far too much money but they don't get any discount. With the sacrifices they make I just think that there's something to be done by the legal profession to help out a little bit.

"I have the legal profession in mind as well. I'm a lawyer and I often think the legal profession gets a bad reputation, often unfairly, simply because it's quite an expensive profession."

He said the scheme would provide a way for solicitors to show they are working in tandem with the military covenant being developed by the UK Government.

The plan is being launched next year on Armed Forces Day. Membership will be free for law firms to sign up to, who will enter into an agreement to offer the discount.

They will then have permission to use the AFLA logo to advertise their membership and give one third of their fees off for those who are eligible.

The scheme has already gained positive, cross-party support, including the Law Society of Scotland, and Mr Steele maintains that it will remain politically neutral.

He also said it does not aim to raise any money. He added: "This is absolutely not a charity. My own view is that there are far too many charities out there. This is about keeping money in pockets."