Sunday, December 14, 2014

Court case aims to restore legal aid

Victims denied justice after coalition cuts, say campaigners

Campaigners and trade unionists protested outside the High Court in London yesterday ahead of a legal challenge against the government’s draconian legal aid cuts for domestic violence victims.

Rights of Women is bringing the challenge, which argues that large numbers of survivors are being denied justice because new rules brought in by the coalition prevent them from obtaining legal aid.

The charity is disputing the legality of the changes, which set out mandatory evidence requirements for a victim seeking legal aid for a private family law case.

Lawyers for the charity say that large numbers of victims are being turned away “at the first hurdle” as they have no permissible evidence, and are left with the choice of paying a solicitor privately, representing themselves, or doing nothing and continuing to be at risk...