Delays, Fees and Redtape.

Yet again, Jaime shows up the MoJ for the hollow promises for which they are rightly notorious. How has it come to this, that a profession as principled as ours is treated with such disingenuous contempt by a bunch of career conscious dissemblers?

“The Lord Chancellor promises to improve cash flow. It does not take new schemes to do so. It does not take some scheme of interim payment. What he should do is recognise that the changes, the expensive changes, that have already happened have made the situation worse. What he should recognise is that we should and could be paid promptly. He should already preside over a system that works. He should ensure we are paid interest on every penny not paid expeditiously. So forgive me if I find his promises hollow.”

A view from the North

As part of his public pronouncements concerning his reforms of Legal Aid our Lord Chancellor has spoken of how he is acutely aware of the problems surrounding cash flow for lawyers. He is going to do something about it for us.

Now I have been at the Bar for twenty years. I have seen many changes in fees. I recall that when the Graduated Fee Scheme was first introduced it was acknowledged to be a system of “swings and roundabouts”. There were some things that were improvements, there were some things that were diminished. One of the antidotes to reduced fees was the fact that a simple system predicated on certain known factors meant speed of payment. Ten days was the target.

Fees were processed locally at the court centre where the case had been heard. If there was a problem with a bill then one of the court staff…

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