Crime News: Advocacy Assistance Now Claimable on Intensive Paper Reviews

The Legal Aid Agency has published changes to the Standard Crime Contract to support law firms working under new Parole Board processes

Providers of criminal legal aid services will now be able to claim advocacy assistance fees for Intensive Paper Reviews.

The changes have been made by the Legal Aid Agency (LAA) following on from the Parole Board’s recent announcement that face-to-face oral hearings will be postponed due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

As a result of this decision, cases directed or listed for an oral hearing will continue either as a remote hearing or be dealt with under a new Intensive Paper Review process.

The LAA has amended the 2017 Standard Crime Contract relating to prison law following consultation with representative bodies. Once a case is directed or listed for an oral hearing then the case will be claimable as advocacy assistance.

This also includes when a decision is taken under the new Intensive Paper Review process.

The new contract amendments will come into effect from 26 June.

A draft version of the amended contract specification is available on GOV.UK.