Response to AGFS consultation

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 Response to LASPO Review

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

YLAL Response: Legal Aid for Inquests

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.

SRA Consultation Response

On 20 December 2017, YLAL responded to the latest consultation by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) on its plans to introduce a Solicitors Qualifying Examination (SQE).

The consultation, 'Looking to the future: phase two of our Handbook reforms', concerns a number of issues, including the introduction of the SQE and the streamlining of the SRA’s current character and suitability requirements for solicitors. 

You can read our response to this consultation below.

 

SRA Consultation Response

On 26 July 2017, YLAL responded to the latest consultation by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) on its proposal to introduce a Solicitors Qualifying Examination (SQE). The consultation, 'A new route to qualification: New Regulations', concerned the regulation of the SQE and the recognition of qualified lawyers under the SQE scheme.

Universal Credit Consultation

On 11 May 2017, YLAL responded to the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) Consultation on Legal Aid Financial Eligibility and Universal Credit. The MoJ states that it is consulting on the impact of changes to the benefits system - specifically the introduction of Universal Credit to replace a number of previous benefits - on financial eligibility for legal aid.

Response to LGFS Consultation

On 24 March 2017, YLAL responded to the Ministry of Justice Consultation on the Litigators’ Graduated Fee Scheme (LGFS) and Court Appointees. Our full response to the consultation is attached below.

The LGFS is the scheme through which criminal defence solicitors are paid for publicly funded work carried out in the Crown Court. The consultation proposes the following reforms to Crown Court work: