The action “Towards a Consolidated and More Efficient Free Legal Aid (FLA) System in North Macedonia” is implemented within the joint programme of the European Union and the Council of Europe “Horizontal Facility for the Western Balkans and Türkiye” running from January 2023 until December 2026. The action is contributing to:

1) professional and independent functioning of the Free Legal Aid system in North Macedonia in a reliable, integrated and sustainable manner;

(2) Reform of the system of legal aid in criminal proceedings in line with the European standards and Council of Europe recommendations;

(3) the consolidation of knowledge and capacities of the legal aid providers in North Macedonia including Ministry of Justice, Bar Association, Civil Society Organisations (CSO-s), Legal Clinics etc;

(4) facilitated and broadened access to legal aid services for the people in North Macedonia, particularly marginalised and vulnerable groups;

What is the goal(s) and objective(s) of the action?

The action aims at supporting the main public actors and local stakeholders in ensuring efficient, accessible, and professional provision of Free Legal Aid services in North Macedonia, in line with European standards and best practices.

Who benefits from the action?

  • Ministry of Justice of North Macedonia and its Regional Offices;

  • Bar Association of North Macedonia and the lawyers;

  • CSO-s authorised for FLA;

  • Legal Clinics authorised for FLA (within universities);

  • the institutions that are indirectly involved in the FLA system: Ministry of Labour and Social Policy, Centres for Social Work, Ministry of Interior, Ombudsman, Municipalities, Courts, CSO-s and other Networks (not registered for FLA) but providing assistance to vulnerable groups;

  • The general population, especially vulnerable groups.

How does the action work?

The action builds upon the results achieved in the implementation of the previous two Horizontal Facility actions on this issue, by addressing the remaining challenges emerging from the initial implementation of the recent legislation on Free Legal Aid and by ensuring that all actors can efficiently provide quality services to FLA beneficiaries.

The action is supporting the process of capacity building for the local beneficiaries and is offering technical assistance in a tailored, targeted and flexible manner to respond to specific and emerging needs of the beneficiaries.

What do we expect to achieve?

The action will achieve

  • Professional and independent functioning of the state system for Free Legal Aid, including a strengthened Central Unit for FLA;

  • A  more efficient and accessible system of free legal aid in criminal proceedings in line with the European standards;

  • Improved legal aid services for the people of North Macedonia and strengthened capacities of the legal aid providers;

  • communities and the society at large in North Macedonia are aware and informed about the provision of FLA in civil, administrative, and criminal proceedings.

What is the budget of the action?

The total budget of the action is 900 000 Euros.

The budget allocated to the overall Horizontal Facility programme amounts to ca. 41 Million EUR (85% funded by the European Union, 15% by the Council of Europe).

How to get more information?

Home - Council of Europe Programme Office in Skopje (

Soravia Center, Filip Vtori Makedonski br. 3, Skopje, 1000

 + 389 (2) 3100 321, e-mail: [email protected]
Horizontal Facility website and e-mail address


About Horizontal Facility for the Western Balkans and Türkiye?

The “Horizontal Facility for the Western Balkans and Türkiye” is a joint initiative of the European Union and the Council of Europe that enables the Western Balkans Beneficiaries and Türkiye to meet their reform agendas in the fields of human rights, rule of law and democracy and to comply with the European standards, which is also a priority for the EU enlargement process.



Project Contacts

Irena Cuculoska - Jakimovska                       Senior Project Officer              +389 2 3100 325                  contact

Anamarija Nikolovska             Project Assistent                        +389 2 3100 333                    contact