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Legal aid update: Affordable legal services | Court of Appeal judgment | Crime forms - updated guidance

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22 May 2015

Affordable legal services: our recommendations

Recent changes in legal aid, increases in court and tribunal fees and the limitations of 'no win, no fee' arrangements are making it harder for people to get access to justice and legal help. The Law Society is making a number of recommendations to government to try to ensure that more people can get the legal help they need, including:

  • improving the way courts work
  • solicitors working differently to continue to meet clients' need for accessible and affordable advice
  • a proper, supported role for free legal advice which signposts people to the help they need
  • technology and innovation to enable access and efficiency
  • the right level of funding by government for affordable justice
  • incentivising public bodies to make the right decisions early to save them paying later

Read more and download the full report

Court of Appeal overturns Bellamy judgment in Re K & H

The Court of Appeal has upheld an appeal by the lord chancellor against a family court judgment where it was ordered that the costs of a legal representative for a father (litigant in person) should be borne by Her Majesty's Court and Tribunal Service.
Read the judgment

Law Society helps Oscar winner shine a spotlight on legal aid cuts

The Law Society is sponsoring the production of a new play by Academy Award-winning writer Rebecca Lenkiewicz. The Invisible aims to tell the stories of ordinary people affected by the cuts to legal aid.
Find out more

Crime forms - updated guidance

Own client contract process

The Legal Aid Agency (LAA) has published an amendment to the own client contract process which confirms that services under this contract will commence on 11 January 2016.

With regards to organisations that need to achieve a relevant quality standard, the information for applicants (IFA) document sets out the deadlines required (in both cases this is the contract start date):

  • For the duty provider contract, the deadline is 5 October 2015.
  • For the own client contract, the deadline is 11 January 2016.

Read the amendment notice and an updated version of the IFA

Criminal legal aid applications

The LAA has published updated guidance on submitting criminal legal aid applications including using the CRM14 eForm. The guidance covers both eForm and paper applications.
Read the updated guidance

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