The government has signalled an openness to reforming the criminal legal aid system to provide for direct payments to barristers practising in the District Court.
Just 14 applications for a legal aid eligibility waiver on the grounds of domestic abuse have been issued since they became available in Northern Ireland over a year ago, new figures show. The Domestic Abuse and Civil Proceedings Act (Northern Ireland) 2021, which came into force in February 2022,&n
The civil legal aid scheme should be extended to cover housing issues amid a "protracted housing, homelessness and accommodation crisis", the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission has recommended. The rights body has published its submission to the independent review of the civil legal aid sche
The Bar of Ireland is seeking talks with ministers over fee restoration for barristers after reports that the government would consider increases in exchange for unspecified concessions. Professional fees paid to barristers practising criminal law on behalf of the State were slashed by amounts rangi
Barristers staged protests outside of courthouses yesterday to condemn the "pitiful rates" paid to defence lawyers practising in the District Court under the criminal legal aid scheme. Dozens of junior lawyers, joined by a handful of senior colleagues in a show of solidarity, gathered outside the Cr
Northern Ireland's Law Society and Bar Council have warned of a looming "catastrophe for access to justice" in a joint letter to the Northern Ireland secretary and the Northern Ireland affairs committee. The letter warns that Northern Ireland's justice system is already in a poor state, with a court
New legislation transferring responsibility for the criminal legal aid scheme to the Legal Aid Board will be drafted this summer under government plans published today. Justice Plan 2023, outlining over 140 actions to be taken by the government this year, was published today by justice minister Simo
Joan Crawford has been appointed as the new chief executive officer of the Legal Aid Board. The Legal Aid Board is the statutory, independent body responsible for the provision of civil legal aid and advice to people of modest means.
Criminal barristers are set to stage another protest over the level of fees paid to practitioners in the District Court.
Chief Justice Donal O'Donnell this morning opened a second two-day conference on access to justice, this time focusing on civil legal aid. We reproduce below the bulk of his opening address. Civil legal aid might indeed have been an obvious focus of the first conference of the Access to Justice Grou
A public consultation on reform of Ireland's civil legal aid system has been extended until the end of the month for further submissions. The consultation, which forms part of the independent review led by former chief justice Frank Clarke, began in December and was originally set to run until 3 Feb
Ireland's civil legal aid scheme should be expanded to cover more people and more areas of law and restructured in line with the community law centre model, a group of 19 legal and social justice organisations have said. In a joint submission to the government review of the scheme, the organisations
Reform of the civil legal aid scheme has moved into its second phase with the launch of a public consultation. The public consultation launched yesterday is in addition to the stakeholder consultation which launched in November and remains open until February. A further targeted consultation for har
Legal advice and legal representation should be provided to people struggling with consumer debt, legal rights group FLAC has said. The fourth and final paper in FLAC's "Pillar to Post" series on consumer debt issues is due to be published this evening.
The long-awaited review of Ireland's civil legal aid scheme has begun with the opening of a consultation for stakeholders. The consultation, which will run from today until Friday 6 January, marks the first part of a multi-phase consultation process aimed at capturing a broad range of views across s