On 30 April 2014 the Joint Committee on Human Rights (JCHR) - a cross-party parliamentary committee composed of MPs and peers - published its report on the totality of the Government’s judicial review changes, including those contained within the Civil Legal Aid (Remuneration) (Amendment) (No. 3) Regulations 2014. These are the regulations which brought into effect from 22 April 2014 the new payment regime for judicial review work under legal aid. You can read more about the changes here.
On Wednesday 7 May the House of Lords will debate a regret motion tabled by Lord Pannick QC “to move that this House regrets that the Civil Legal Aid (Remuneration) (Amendment) (No. 3) Regulations 2014 make the duty of the Lord Chancellor to provide legal aid in judicial review cases dependent on the court granting permission to proceed. (SI 2014/607)”.
You can read more about the Judicial Review payment reforms here.
The Justice Select Committee (JSC) has set up an inquiry into the impact of the changes brought about by the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (LASPO) from 1 April 2013. The JSC has asked for evidence on a number of different questions including the impact of the domestic violence gateway, the cuts to scope and the impact on the number of litigants in person. The questions are available to view via the JSC website here.
YLAL has responded to the new consultation of the Solicitors Regulation Authority, "Training for Tomorrow: Regulation Review".
This consultation aims to remove unnecessary regulatory burdens and improve processes for the regulator. It is part of a wider package of reform for the SRA’s regulatory framework for legal education and training.
On 5 February 2014 the Government announced that it would be going ahead with a series of changes to restrict access to judicial review. The changes – which were originally proposed in the November 2013 consultation Judicial review: proposals for further reform – include further cuts to legal aid and amendments to the rules on costs which will make it more difficult for charities and NGOs to intervene in judicial review proceedings.
YLAL has produced a one-page updating guide to show where we are now with the current round of proposed legal aid cuts. You can download the leaflet below. Please distribute amongst work colleagues and friends and send to your MP to let them know that the recent Government announcement does not go far enough to save UK justice.
YLAL is pleased to announce the publication of our latest report on social mobility and diversity in the legal aid sector: “One Step Forward, Two Steps Back”. The report is to be launched on 30 October 2013 at an event at the Keyworth Centre, London South Bank University. The event will run from 1830-2130. Our keynote speaker is Baroness Hale. The event will feature a debate with a panel of guests including Lucy Scott-Moncrieff – Director of Scott-Moncrieff & Associates Ltd and Chair of the Law Society's Equality and Diversity Committee; David Johnston – CEO of the Social Mobility Foundation; Chris Topping – Partner at Broudie, Jackson & Canter, Simao Paxi-Cato – YLAL and Invictus Chambers and James Wakefield – Director of the Council of the Inns of Court. The discussion will be chaired by journalist Raphael Rowe.