Update on the provision of criminal legal aid services.
The Lord Chancellor has made a written ministerial statement to Parliament setting out a change in policy with regard to criminal legal aid contracting.
As a result, the Legal Aid Agency (LAA) will discontinue the procurement process for 2015 Duty Provider Crime Contracts and 2015 Own Client Contracts (including Prison Law and Appeals and Reviews work).
LAA had secured provision of services for work between 11 January and 31 March 2016 under a contingency extension to the 2010 Standard Crime Contract.
We will take steps to extend existing contingency contracts to ensure continuity of service until replacement contracting arrangements are procured and implemented.
LAA will write to all organisations affected to set out what this means for them.
The Lord Chancellor has also announced that, from 1 April 2016 until 1 April 2017, there will be a suspension of the litigator fee cut that was implemented in July 2015.
The new fee scheme, previously planned for April 2016, will no longer be implemented.
Changes to criminal legal aid contracting - Written statement to Parliament