Defence lawyers prepare for more protests as the government plan more cuts

Posted by - 22nd February 2017

Another outbreak of protests by defence lawyers is in prospect following the new proposals on the litigators’ graduated fee scheme. The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) have put a second 8.75% fee cut opn hold pending the results of the new consultation but identify two new areas for cuts, litigators’ fees and payments to court appointees. ‘Solicitors are angered

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This (young legal aid) life: Katherine Barnes

Posted by - 22nd February 2017

It’s Wednesday morning and I’ve set my alarm for 5.30am. I’m in court this morning and still have some material to prepare. I make some coffee and settle down to look at the new documents, which my solicitor sent through late yesterday evening. Read other articles in The (young legal aid) life series here. I am representing

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LALY Awards 2016. Photo: Richard Gray

Nominations for the 2017 LALYs are open

Posted by - 21st February 2017

Nominations for the 2017 Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year (LALY) awards are now open. There are 12 awards in total including Children’s Rights, Public Law, Immigration and Asylum, Access to Justice through IT, and Criminal Defence. After successfully using crowdfunding to raise sponsorship for the Legal Aid Newcomer award, which traditionally kicks off the

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Introducing the litigant in person network

Posted by - 20th February 2017

The Litigant in Person Network is an online platform which aims to connect a wide range of people with a common goal of improving access to justice. Coordinated by the Litigant in Person Support Strategy, and supported by The Legal Education Foundation, the network is a place for interested professionals to share, discussion and collaborate

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‘We will have access to justice’: Greater Manchester Law Centre opens

Posted by - 16th February 2017

The Greater Manchester Law Centre opened its doors to the public this weekend becoming the third new centre to join the network post-LASPO. ‘Legal aid has been cut and cut again,’ commented John Nicholson, the law centre’s chair. ‘Now – when people are facing vicious benefit sanctions, homelessness, escalating racism, cuts in health and education

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LAA responds to criticisms of CCMS digital billing system

Posted by - 10th February 2017

The Legal Aid Agency (LAA) has denied ‘second guessing’ legal aid lawyers and refusing funding applications for issues that should be determined in court. In an article by LegalVoice comment editor Fiona Bawdon published on Monday about concerns over the new and controversial CCMS digital billing system, a leading family law specialist complained about agency staff

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How US pro bono lawyers mobilised to beat Trump travel ban

Posted by - 8th February 2017

  The American legal profession’s response to the new president’s controversial executive order was unprecedented, says James Sandbach. Amid the misery caused by Donald Trump’s executive order banning anyone trying to enter the USA from seven Muslim countries, there have been shining beacons of hope and strength. At the time of writing, the order has

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Legal Aid Agency in ‘denial’ over flawed digital billing scheme

Posted by - 6th February 2017

A year after it was rolled out, problems with CCMS continue unabated. Fiona Bawdon reports Legal Aid Agency delays and continuing problems with its ‘disastrous’ digital application and billing scheme are putting vulnerable clients at risk and driving firms out of business, lawyers are warning. The LAA’s much-criticised Client and Cost Management System (CCMS) became

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JusticeWatch: The persecution industry

Posted by - 3rd February 2017

The persecution industry For the Daily Mail Phil Shiner’s disgrace – the lawyer was struck off yesterday – was one in the eye for the human rights industry. ‘To this country’s self-righteous legal establishment – which garlanded him with awards – he was a campaigner for justice, and newspaper criticism of him was just ‘media-manufactured vilification’,’

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