New report shows government legal aid cuts claims are wrong

By staff writers
11 Jan 2012

A Kings College London (KCL) report finds that changes proposed in the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Bill will save less than half of the £270 million predicted by the Government - though denying justice to thousands of vulnerable people, say critics.

The report, commissioned by The Law Society of England and Wales, analysed the proposed changes to family, social welfare and clinical negligence law, and identified knock-on costs of £139 million per annum.

This means that the Government will realise approximately 42 per cent of the predicted savings. These knock-on costs will largely be borne by other government departments, including a predicted £28 million being shouldered by the NHS each year.

Following publication of the new report, 31 charities, advice and legal organisations have signed a joint letter calling for Peers to consider carefully the impact of the cuts to legal aid on individuals.

They point out that over 78,000 disabled people and 140,000 children will be denied help if the Bill goes through.

* The letter is viewable here: www.justice-for-all.org.uk/News/Major-charities-sign-joint-letter-on-leg...

* Read the Kings College London report here: http://www.kcl.ac.uk/schools/sspp/mgmt/news/cookson

* Justice for All Campaign: http://www.disabilityalliance.org/justiceforall.htm

[Ekk/3]

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