Legal Aid

27th February 2018

Iain Duncan Smith backs call for legal aid to be restored for early adviceIain Duncan Smith has backed the Law Society’s campaign calling for the Government to provide legal aid for early advice in family and housing law.

Since 2012, legal aid has not been available for most areas of early legal advice.

A lack of free early legal advice can cause problems to escalate unnecessarily, adding more pressure on public services, potentially increasing the burden on the courts, and increasing the cost to the public purse.

The lack of legal aid for early advice is a barrier to individuals accessing justice, which has a wider impact on the rule of law and the ability of individuals to access their rights.

Speaking after a Parliamentary event on 27th February on the campaign, Iain Duncan Smith MP for Chingford & Woodford Green said:
“I am regularly contacted by constituents with issues which could have been resolved sooner if only they had access to free early legal advice.

“We know the Government is currently reviewing the legal aid reforms made in 2012, and as part of that review I urge them to consider providing legal aid for early advice.”

Law Society president, Joe Egan, said:

“A lack of free early legal advice can cause problems to escalate unnecessarily, potentially increasing the burden on the courts and increasing costs to the taxpayer.

“The current system is a false economy, meaning more cases are ending up in court that could have been resolved earlier, and more pressure is applied on our already stretched public services. We are calling on the Government to provide legal aid for early advice as part of their review of legal aid reforms.”

POLICY IDEAS

Freedom of Movement post Brexit by Rt Hon Iain Duncan Smith MP


March 2018

Summary

This paper sets out proposals to revise the immigration system and additionally in the annexe it makes the point that more information is required to fully understand the nature of where the costs fall and benefits exist. The information on much, if not all, of this is held by the government.
 
The central objective should be to ensure control over the movement of people. Using a combination of work permits and a cap we would look to control access to work and rights to settlement. Free movement for EU citizens for other purposes should be preserved.