Young Legal Aid Lawyers (YLAL) notes the on-going media coverage concerning the case of Jack Shepherd, and in particular the criticism of the way in which criminal appeals are funded. YLAL believes that legal aid should be available at all stages of the criminal justice system, including trial and appeal. Justice may only be done if individuals are properly represented throughout the process of criminal proceedings, including before appeal courts.
The Law Society has published findings which state that the number of trainee solicitors working for less than the recommended minimum salary is at its lowest point for three years.
As requested at our London meeting on 9 January 2019, please find attached the consent order in Duncan Lewis' judicial review of the rules prohibiting payment in claims for judicial review in circumstances where permission has not been granted. Many thanks to Duncan Lewis and Tim Buley from Landmark Chambers for providing this.
Attached to this post is Sarah Hannett's handout from the joint YLAL-DLA event on "Access to Justice for Victims of Discrimination" held in London on 14 November 2018. The handout is entitled: "Using the Equality Act 2010 in Public Law Claims".
On 12 October 2018, Young Legal Aid Lawyers (YLAL) responded to the Ministry of Justice consultation on 'Amending the Advocates' Graduated Fee Scheme'. Our full response to the consultation is below.
We told the government that whilst we welcome the much-needed injection of additional funding into the Advocates' Graduated Fee Scheme (AGFS), we wish to make it absolutely clear that it is not enough. It is not enough to address the crisis within criminal legal aid and, more broadly, the criminal justice system as a whole.
YLAL has submitted its response to the Ministry of Justice Post-Implementation Review of Part 1 of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012.
YLAL's submission concludes by setting out our analysis of the impact of LASPO in comparison to the stated aims of the legislation, within which our key proposals for reform are summarised.
Discouraging unnecessary and adversarial litigation at public expense
Many of YLAL's members work closely with organisations such as INQUEST, the charity that supports bereaved families. YLAL supports the following recommendations by INQUEST in relation to legal aid for inquests:
a. Automatic non-means tested funding should be provided to families for specialist legal representation immediately following a state-related death.
b. Legal aid should also include financial support for families, with reference to: travel and subsistence, overnight accommodation, and loss of earnings.
You can find our live tweeting of the Women in Law event here.
This event was hosted by KCH Garden Square Chambers in Nottingham on Wednesday 13 June. It focussed on the progression of women at the Bar, in the solicitors' profession and in the judiciary.
We were joined by: