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Legal Aid

Volume 450: debated on Monday 16 October 2006

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs what assessment she has made of the likely impact of a reduction in legal aid fees on the numbers of available legal aid family lawyers. (92960)

The proposals in the DCA/Legal Services Commission consultation paper, ‘Legal Aid: a sustainable future’, have been devised to be cost neutral. A draft regulatory impact assessment is available from the DCA website, www.dca.gov.uk. This includes an analysis of the impact of the proposals on legal aid providers. Consultation closed on 12 October and we will issue our response on the way forward in due course. The final proposals will include a full impact analysis which will look at the effect on providers of any changes to the market.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs how many representations on fees for legal aid family lawyers she has received from (a) Guildford, (b) Surrey and (c) England; and if she will make a statement. (92961)

As at 11 October, the DCA and Legal Services Commission had received 148 responses on the proposals for family legal aid fees set out in the consultation paper “Legal Aid: a sustainable future”. None of these responses were from Guildford or Surrey.