Here at Terrells we can still offer assistance under the legal aid scheme which means that our costs will either be covered fully by the Legal Aid Agency or our services are offered at a much reduced rate.
There have been significant changes to legal aid from 1 April 2013 and it is necessary for us to assess your eligibility. There are two strands to the test which are as follows:-
- You must qualify on a means basis – if you want to assess whether you qualify yourself, click on the following link:- http://www.justice.gov.uk/legal-aid/assess-your-clients-eligibility/civil-eligibility/civil-eligibility-calculator Alternatively, you can contact one of our experienced fee earners at the office to discuss this further.
- You must also be able to provide one of the following pieces of evidence to show that you have suffered or that you are at risk of suffering domestic violence:-
- an unspent conviction for a domestic violence offence
- a caution for a domestic violence offence given in the preceding 2 years
- ongoing criminal proceedings for a domestic violence offence
- a current injunction order or one granted in the preceding 2 years
- an undertaking given to the Court in place of an injunction order within a family relationship in the last 2 years but excluding cross undertakings
- where there has been a multi-agency risk assessment conference a letter from the chair confirming there is a high risk of domestic violence and in the preceding 2 years a plan has been put in place to protect the person from domestic violence
- a copy of a finding of fact made in UK court proceedings in the preceding 2 years that there has been domestic violence giving rise to a risk of harm
- a letter or a report from a health professional confirming an examination in the last 2 years showing injuries or a condition consistent with those of a person suffering domestic violence and having no reason to believe that the injuries or condition were not caused by domestic violence
- a letter or report from a UK domestic violence support organisation confirming that in the preceding 2 years a person was admitted for a period of 24 hours or more to a refuge, the date of admission and leaving the refuge and that admission arose as a result of domestic violence
If you require assistance in relation to children matters only, and there is no domestic violence, the Legal Aid Agency will accept one of the following:-
- a letter from Social Services confirming that in the preceding 2 years the child was assessed as being, or at risk of being, a victim of child abuse by B
- a letter from Social Services confirming that in the preceding 2 years a child protection plan was put in place to protect the child from abuse or risk of abuse by B or a copy of that plan
- an application for an Order for a protective injunction made with an application for a Prohibited Steps Order under Section 8 of the Children Act 1989 which has not, at the date of the application for legal aid, been decided by the Court
Please note, if you are seeking advice or assistance in relation to injunctive proceedings, you would not need to satisfy the evidence criteria – you would simply need to qualify on a means basis.
If you do not qualify for legal aid, then we do offer a fixed fee appointment for £100.00 plus VAT. This will include a meeting of up to one hour with one of our experienced fee earners and a detailed advice letter will be sent to you following the appointment.
We also offer competitive rates on a privately paying basis and can discuss with you the fixed fee packages which we offer.