We find Legal Aid Lawyers fighting back against the procurement process last used by the LAA to reduce fees and access to public funding. " years ago Lawyers had no opportunity to do this when the government axed legal aid for clinical negligence. That loss was enacted by statute and with an inability to challenge the supremacy of parliament citizens lost out on what had been a vital tool to seek justice for victims of clinical neglect.
We need the Government now to reconsider their approach to public funding. It is doubtful most citizens will realize what has be lost, until they need it. Will it then be too late for the "access to justice" tide to turn?
The government is facing a two-pronged attack over its new criminal legal aid contracts. The Legal Aid Agency will face challenges from around 90 firms by the end of the week. Last Friday it also received a letter before claim for judicial review from seven firms, including Kaim Todner Solicitors, a key member of the Big Firms Group.The agency maintains that service under the new contracts will commence on 11 January as scheduled. A spokesperson for the agency said it was entering into contracts from 2 November.However, around 40 unsuccessful bidders filed claims in the High Court last week. Another 50 are expected to file claims today and tomorrow.If a claim is issued before a contract has been signed, the agency will be subject to an automatic suspension under the Public Contracts Regulations 2006.