Bar Council Launches Major Research Project One Year On From LASPO

1 April 2014

The Bar Council, which represents barristers in England and Wales, has today marked the first anniversary of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act (LASPO) by launching a major research project on its impact, starting with a survey of the family and civil Bar, costs lawyers, clerks and practice managers. This will provide an empirical evidence base for a full report which will be published in September and inform the Bar Council's policy-making and lobbying.

Nicholas Lavender QC, Chairman of the Bar, said:

"One year on from the implementation of LASPO we have, unsurprisingly, seen a sorry state of affairs in many areas of family and civil law. We warned when it was going through Parliament of the dangers of this legislation and regrettably, we have not been at the fallout.

"Anecdotally, we know that, as a result of the Government's cuts, there are more litigants in person, more delays in trials and more appeals. Vulnerable individuals are struggling to get access to legal representation.

"We are undertaking this research study to provide evidence from which we can better understand and explain the trends which we are seeing across civil and family work.

"We will use this to guide the formulation of policy and to explain to Government, as we approach the General Election, how LASPO has affected access to justice for those who need it so much."

                                                                    ENDS

Notes to Editors

1. For further information, please contact the Bar Council Press Office on 020 7222 2525.

2. The full survey can be found here.

3. The  Bar Council represents barristers in England and Wales. It promotes: 

  • The Bar's high quality specialist advocacy and advisory services

  • Fair access to justice for all

  • The highest standards of ethics, equality and diversity across the profession, and

  • The development of business opportunities for barristers at home and abroad. 

The General Council of the Bar is the Approved Regulator of the Bar of England and Wales. It discharges its regulatory functions through the independent Bar Standards Board.