Legislation / Legal
MoJ: Government proposals to end the hereditary principle in the House of Lords were debated as the Constitutional Reform and Governance Bill had its second reading. The bill also takes the historic step of placing the Civil Service Code of impartiality & professionalism onto a statutory footing to reinforce the civil service's independence.
Press release ~ Constitutional Reform and Governance Bill ~ Constitutional Reform and Governance Bill - Parliament website
MoJ: The Ministry of Justice and the Legal Services Commission has published new fee structures for family legal aid. It comes as a result of a consultation process and will see hourly rates replaced with standard fees. This will ensure that both barristers & solicitor advocates will receive the same rate for the same advocacy work.
It has also been confirmed that the proposal to remove payment for independent social work from legal aid scope in private law cases will not been implemented. The MoJ and the LSC will continue to work with the DCSF & Cafcass to determine the best way to use mutual resources for the benefit of vulnerable children.
The LSC will shortly publish the response & impact assessment on their website and they plan to introduce the new schemes in the new civil contracts in October 2010.
Press release ~ Formal consultation documents ~ Ministry of Justice ~ Legal Services Commission - Family
MoJ: Bridget Prentice has made a statement (see Press release) concerning council tax enforcement in magistrates’ courts.