The government today unveiled a support package it claims will help legal aid practitioners weather the coronavirus pandemic while maintaining access to justice.
The Law Society welcomed the government’s efforts to help solicitors make payment claims earlier than they usually would. However, whether the response is adequate depends on how quickly the police and courts can find new ways of handling more routine work and maintain a volume of cases.
Amanda Pinto QC, chair of the Bar Council, said today’s measures ‘will have little impact on the many criminal legal aid barristers whose livelihood depends on conducting important criminal trials. The changes, albeit made in a spirit of helpfulness, will have no effect on the overwhelming majority of criminal barristers’.