Legal aid is government funding to pay for legal support for folks who cannot afford a lawyer. To assess the respect of this requirement, the ECtHR held in the case of Airey v. Ireland that the effectiveness of the correct to access to justice throughout the correct to free legal aid depends mostly on no matter whether the individual in question would be able to present his/her case correctly and satisfactorily without the help of a lawyer.
Even so, the most recent round of payments of public subsidies to struggling solicitors, down from last year’s £150.5 million and marked for a further reduction by Finance Secretary John Swinney to £126.1m in 2016 budget – sparked ire at the Law Society of Scotland who yesterday attacked the Finance Secretary’s legal aid reductions as unrealistic”.
The International Commission of Jurists in its resolution on Legal Aid and Rule of Law” observed,Equal access to law for the reach and poor alike is crucial to the upkeep of the rule of law.” It is, consequently, crucial to supply sufficient legal advice and representation to all these threatened as to their life, liberty or reputation who are not in a position to spend for it.
Speaking to sources SLAB did make an work to take Mr Lockhart to job as is evident in the report, nevertheless organisation is clearly hamstrung by vested legal interests, and with the combination of the Law Society of Scotland & Legal Defence Union campaigning against any action, no motion for repayment was produced at the time, at least none that was revealed by SLAB.
Documents released by the Scottish Legal Aid Board – Additional Payments to Niels Lockhart – in response to a Freedom of Information request – reveal solicitor Niels S Lockhart , of NS Lockhart Solicitors, Kilmarnock – who has been paid over £1.2million of legal aid because 2003 – was paid a further £34,711 (excl VAT) of taxpayer funded legal aid by the Legal Aid Board – even although he was already barred from performing any further legal aid perform.