Previous Next

Contents page 1-9 10-19 20-29 30-39 40-49 50-58 60-69 70-79 80-89 90-99 100-116 117-119 120-129 Last page

Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders BillPage 20

(c) provision about what the Lord Chancellor or the person by whom the
services were made available must do with the amounts,

(d) provision for the payment of interest on all or part of the amounts,

(e) provision for the payment to the individual concerned of any amount
5in excess of the amounts described in subsection (2), and

(f) provision for the enforcement of requirements described in paragraph
(a).

(6) Regulations under this section may include provision requiring information
and documents to be provided.

25 10Costs in civil proceedings

(1) Costs ordered against an individual in relevant civil proceedings must not
exceed the amount (if any) which it is reasonable for the individual to pay
having regard to all the circumstances, including—

(a) the financial resources of all of the parties to the proceedings, and

(b) 15their conduct in connection with the dispute to which the proceedings
relate.

(2) In subsection (1) “relevant civil proceedings”, in relation to an individual,
means—

(a) proceedings for the purposes of which civil legal services are made
20available for the individual under this Part, or

(b) if such services are made available for the individual under this Part for
the purposes of only part of proceedings, that part of the proceedings.

(3) Regulations may make provision for exceptions from subsection (1).

(4) In assessing for the purposes of subsection (1) the financial resources of an
25individual for whom civil legal services are made available, the following must
not be taken into account, except so far as prescribed—

(a) the individual’s clothes and household furniture, and

(b) the implements of the individual’s trade.

(5) Subject to subsections (1) to (4), regulations may make provision about costs in
30relation to proceedings for the purposes of which civil legal services are made
available under this Part.

(6) Regulations under subsection (5) may, in particular, make provision—

(a) specifying the principles to be applied in determining the amount of
any costs which may be awarded against a party for whom civil legal
35services are made available under this Part,

(b) limiting the circumstances in which, or the extent to which, an order for
costs may be enforced against such a party,

(c) as to the cases in which, and the extent to which, such a party may be
required to give security for costs and the manner in which it is to be
40given,

(d) requiring the payment by the Lord Chancellor of the whole or part of
any costs incurred by a party for whom civil legal services are not made
available under this Part,

(e) specifying the principles to be applied in determining the amount of
45costs which may be awarded to a party for whom civil legal services are
made available under this Part,

Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders BillPage 21

(f) as to the court, tribunal or other person by whom the amount of any
costs is to be determined, and

(g) as to the extent to which any determination of that amount is to be final.

(7) Regulations under this section may include provision requiring information
5and documents to be provided.

Providers of services etc

26 Choice of provider of services etc

(1) The Lord Chancellor’s duty under section 1(1) does not include a duty to
secure that, where services are made available to an individual under this Part,
10they are made available by the means selected by the individual.

(2) The Lord Chancellor may discharge that duty, in particular, by arranging for
the services to be provided by telephone or by other electronic means.

(3) The Lord Chancellor’s duty under section 1(1) does not include a duty to
secure that, where services are made available to an individual under this Part,
15they are made available by a person selected by the individual, subject to
subsections (4) to (10).

(4) An individual who qualifies under this Part for representation for the purposes
of criminal proceedings by virtue of a determination under section 15 may
select any representative or representatives willing to act for the individual,
20subject to regulations under subsection (6).

(5) Where an individual exercises that right, representation by the selected
representative or representatives is to be available under this Part for the
purposes of the proceedings.

(6) Regulations may provide that in prescribed circumstances—

(a) 25the right conferred by subsection (4) is not to apply in cases of
prescribed descriptions,

(b) an individual who has been provided with advice or assistance in
accordance with section 12 or regulations under section 14 by a person
selected by the individual is to be taken to have selected that person
30under subsection (4),

(c) the right conferred by subsection (4) is not to include a right to select a
representative of a prescribed description,

(d) that right is to select only a representative located in a prescribed area
or of a prescribed description,

(e) 35that right is to select not more than a prescribed number of
representatives to act at any one time, and

(f) that right is not to include a right to select a representative in place of a
representative previously selected.

(7) Regulations under subsection (6)(b) may prescribe circumstances in which an
40individual is to be taken to have selected a person to provide advice or
assistance.

(8) Regulations may provide that in prescribed circumstances the Lord Chancellor
is not required to make available representation for an individual by a
prescribed representative.

Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders BillPage 22

(9) Provision made under subsection (8) does not prejudice any right of the
individual to select another representative.

(10) The circumstances which may be prescribed under this section include that a
determination has been made by a prescribed person.

27 5Position of providers of services

(1) The fact that services provided for an individual are or could be provided
under arrangements made for the purposes of this Part does not affect—

(a) the relationship between the individual and the person by whom the
services are provided,

(b) 10any privilege arising out of that relationship, or

(c) any right which the individual may have to be indemnified by another
person in respect of expenses incurred by the individual,

except to the extent that regulations provide otherwise.

(2) A person who provides services under arrangements made for the purposes of
15this Part must not take any payment in respect of the services apart from—

(a) payment made in accordance with the arrangements, and

(b) payment authorised by the Lord Chancellor to be taken.

(3) Regulations may provide that the withdrawal of a determination that an
individual qualifies for prescribed services under this Part does not affect the
20right of any person who has provided such services to the individual under
arrangements made for the purposes of this Part to remuneration for work
done before the date of the withdrawal.

28 Code of conduct

(1) The Lord Chancellor must publish a code of conduct to be observed by the
25following persons when providing services to an individual under
arrangements made for the purposes of this Part—

(a) civil servants, and

(b) employees of a body established and maintained by the Lord
Chancellor.

(2) 30The code must include—

(a) duties to avoid discrimination,

(b) duties to protect the interests of the individuals for whom services are
provided,

(c) duties to courts and tribunals,

(d) 35duties to avoid conflicts of interest,

(e) duties of confidentiality, and

(f) duties on persons who are members of a professional body to comply
with the rules of the body.

(3) The Lord Chancellor must lay the code, and any revision of the code, before
40Parliament.

(4) The persons described in subsection (1)(a) and (b) are not subject to the
direction of the Lord Chancellor when providing services to an individual
under arrangements made for the purposes of this Part.

Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders BillPage 23

29 Position of other parties, courts and tribunals

(1) Except as expressly provided by regulations, any rights conferred by or under
this Part on an individual for whom services are provided under this Part for
the purposes of proceedings do not affect—

(a) 5the rights or liabilities of other parties to the proceedings, or

(b) the principles on which the discretion of a court or tribunal is normally
exercised.

(2) Regulations may make provision about the procedure of a court or tribunal in
relation to services made available under this Part.

(3) 10Regulations under subsection (2) may, in particular, authorise the exercise of
the functions of a court or tribunal by—

(a) a member or officer of that court or tribunal, or

(b) another court or tribunal.

Supplementary

30 15Legal aid for legal persons

Schedule 3 (legal aid for legal persons) has effect.

31 Foreign law

(1) The civil legal services described in Part 1 of Schedule 1 do not include services
relating to any law other than the law of England and Wales, except—

(a) 20where express provision to the contrary is made by or under Part 1 of
Schedule 1;

(b) where such law is relevant for determining any issue relating to the law
of England and Wales;

(c) in other circumstances specified by the Lord Chancellor by order.

(2) 25A determination by the Director or a court under section 12, 14 or 15 that an
individual qualifies for advice, assistance or representation under this Part
does not impose a duty on the Lord Chancellor to secure that services relating
to any law other than the law of England and Wales are made available,
except—

(a) 30where such law is relevant for determining any issue relating to the law
of England and Wales;

(b) in other circumstances specified by the Lord Chancellor by order.

(3) The Lord Chancellor may not make an order under subsection (1) or (2) unless
the Lord Chancellor considers—

(a) 35that it is necessary to make the order because failure to do so would
result in a breach of—

(i) an individual’s Convention rights (within the meaning of the
Human Rights Act 1998), or

(ii) any rights of an individual to the provision of legal services that
40are enforceable EU rights, or

(b) that it is appropriate to make the order having regard to any risk that
failure to do so would result in such a breach.

Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders BillPage 24

32 Restriction on disclosure of information about financial resources

(1) A person to whom information is disclosed under section 21 or this subsection
may disclose the information to any person to whom its disclosure is necessary
or expedient in connection with facilitating a determination in respect of an
5individual’s financial resources that is required under section 20.

(2) A person to whom such information is disclosed must not—

(a) disclose the information other than in accordance with subsection (1),
or

(b) use the information other than for the purpose of facilitating a
10determination described in subsection (1).

(3) Subsection (2) does not prevent—

(a) the disclosure of information in accordance with an enactment or an
order of a court,

(b) the disclosure of information for the purposes of the investigation or
15prosecution of an offence (or suspected offence) under the law of
England and Wales or Northern Ireland or any other jurisdiction,
except where regulations otherwise provide,

(c) the disclosure of information for the purposes of instituting, or
otherwise for the purposes of, proceedings before a court, or

(d) 20the disclosure of information which has previously been lawfully
disclosed to the public.

(4) A person who discloses or uses information in contravention of this section is
guilty of an offence and liable—

(a) on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding
252 years or a fine (or both);

(b) on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6
months or a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum (or both).

(5) It is a defence for a person charged with an offence under this section to prove
that the person reasonably believed that the disclosure or use was lawful.

(6) 30In this section “enactment” includes—

(a) an enactment contained in subordinate legislation (within the meaning
of the Interpretation Act 1978), and

(b) an enactment contained in, or in an instrument made under, an Act or
Measure of the National Assembly for Wales or Northern Ireland
35legislation.

33 Restriction on disclosure of other information

(1) This section applies to information that is provided—

(a) to the Lord Chancellor, the Director, a court, a tribunal or any other
person on whom functions are imposed or conferred by or under this
40Part, and

(b) in connection with the case of an individual seeking or receiving
services provided under arrangements made for the purposes of this
Part.

(2) Such information must not be disclosed, subject to the exceptions in section 34.

Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders BillPage 25

(3) A person who discloses information in contravention of this section is guilty of
an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding level 4 on
the standard scale.

(4) It is a defence for a person charged with an offence under this section to prove
5that the person reasonably believed that the disclosure was lawful.

(5) Proceedings for an offence under this section may not be brought without the
consent of the Director of Public Prosecutions.

(6) Nothing in this section applies to information if—

(a) it is provided to a person providing services under arrangements made
10for the purposes of this Part, and

(b) it is provided by or on behalf of an individual seeking or receiving the
services.

(7) Nothing in this section applies to information to which section 32 applies.

34 Exceptions from restriction under section 33

(1) 15Section 33(2) does not prevent the disclosure of information—

(a) for the purpose of enabling or assisting the Lord Chancellor or the
Secretary of State for Justice to carry out their functions (whether
conferred or imposed by an Act or otherwise),

(b) for the purpose of enabling or assisting the Director to carry out
20functions imposed or conferred on the Director by or under this Part, or

(c) for the purpose of enabling or assisting a court, tribunal or other person
on whom functions are imposed or conferred by or under this Part to
carry out those functions.

(2) Section 33(2) does not prevent—

(a) 25the disclosure of information in accordance with the law of England
and Wales or an order of a court,

(b) the disclosure of information for the purposes of the investigation or
prosecution of an offence (or suspected offence) under the law of
England and Wales or any other jurisdiction, except where regulations
30otherwise provide,

(c) the disclosure of information for the purposes of instituting, or
otherwise for the purposes of, proceedings before a court,

(d) the disclosure of information which has previously been lawfully
disclosed to the public, or

(e) 35the disclosure of information for the purpose of facilitating the proper
performance by a tribunal of disciplinary functions.

(3) Section 33(2) does not prevent the disclosure of—

(a) information in the form of a summary or collection of information that
is framed so that information relating to an individual cannot be
40ascertained from it, or

(b) information about the amount of any grant, loan or other payment
made to a person by the Lord Chancellor under arrangements made for
the purposes of this Part.

(4) Section 33(2) does not prevent the disclosure of information for any purpose—

(a) 45with the consent of the individual in connection with whose case it was
provided, and

Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders BillPage 26

(b) if the information was provided other than by that individual, with the
consent of the person who provided the information.

(5) Section 33(2) does not prevent the disclosure of information after the end of the
restricted period if—

(a) 5the disclosure is by a person who is a public authority for the purposes
of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 or who is acting on behalf of
such a person, and

(b) the information is not held by the public authority on behalf of another
person.

(6) 10The restricted period is the period of 100 years beginning with the end of the
calendar year in which a record containing the information was first created by
a person to whom the information was provided in connection with a case
described in section 33(1)(b).

35 Misrepresentation

(1) 15This section applies where a person—

(a) intentionally fails to comply with a requirement imposed by or under
this Part to provide documents or information, or

(b) in providing documents or information in accordance with such a
requirement, makes a statement or representation knowing or
20believing it to be false.

(2) The person is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine
not exceeding level 4 on the standard scale.

(3) Proceedings in respect of an offence under this section may (despite anything
in the Magistrates’ Courts Act 1980) be brought at any time within the period
25of 6 months beginning with the date on which evidence sufficient in the
opinion of the prosecutor to justify a prosecution comes to the prosecutor’s
knowledge.

(4) Subsection (3) does not authorise the commencement of proceedings for an
offence more than 2 years after the date on which the offence was committed.

(5) 30A county court is to have jurisdiction to hear and determine an action brought
by the Lord Chancellor to recover loss sustained by reason of—

(a) the failure by a person to comply with a requirement imposed by or
under this Part to provide documents or information, or

(b) a false statement or false representation made by a person in providing
35documents or information in accordance with such a requirement.

36 Abolition of Legal Services Commission

(1) The Legal Services Commission ceases to exist.

(2) Schedule 4 (transfer of employees and property etc of Legal Services
Commission) has effect.

(3) 40The Lord Chancellor must, as soon as practicable after subsection (1) comes
into force—

(a) prepare a report on how the Legal Services Commission has carried out
its functions in the final period,

(b) lay a copy of the report before Parliament, and

Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders BillPage 27

(c) once it has been laid, publish the report.

(4) The Lord Chancellor must, as soon as practicable after subsection (1) comes
into force—

(a) prepare a statement of accounts for the Legal Services Commission for
5the final period, and

(b) send a copy of the statement to the Comptroller and Auditor General.

(5) The Comptroller and Auditor General must—

(a) examine, certify and report on the statement, and

(b) arrange for a copy of the statement and the report to be laid before
10Parliament.

(6) In this section—

37 20Consequential amendments

Schedule 5 (consequential amendments) has effect.

38 Orders, regulations and directions

(1) Orders, regulations and directions under this Part—

(a) may make different provision for different cases, circumstances or
25areas,

(b) may make provision generally or only for specified cases,
circumstances or areas, and

(c) may make provision having effect for a specified period.

(2) They may, in particular, make provision by reference to—

(a) 30services provided for the purposes of proceedings before a particular
court, tribunal or other person,

(b) services provided for a particular class of individual, or

(c) services provided for individuals selected by reference to particular
criteria or on a sampling basis.

(3) 35Orders and regulations under this Part—

(a) may provide for a person to exercise a discretion in dealing with any
matter,

(b) may make provision by reference to a document produced by any
person, and

(c) 40may make consequential, incidental, supplementary, transitional or
saving provision.

(4) Orders and regulations under this Part are to be made by statutory instrument.

Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders BillPage 28

(5) A statutory instrument containing an order or regulations under this Part is
subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of
Parliament, subject to subsection (6).

(6) A statutory instrument containing an order or regulations listed in subsection
5(7) (whether alone or with other provision) may not be made unless a draft of
the instrument has been laid before, and approved by a resolution of, each
House of Parliament.

(7) Those orders and regulations are—

(a) orders under section 8;

(b) 10orders under section 16(3);

(c) regulations under section 17(7);

(d) regulations under section 18;

(e) regulations under section 19;

(f) regulations under section 21;

(g) 15regulations under section 25(3) or (6)(b) or (d);

(h) regulations under section 26(6)(a) or (8);

(i) regulations under paragraph 5(9) of Schedule 3;

(j) regulations under paragraph 10 of Schedule 4 that modify an Act (as
defined in that Schedule).

39 20Interpretation

(1) In this Part—

(2) In this Part references to proceedings are to be interpreted in accordance with
section 19(3).

Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders BillPage 29

40 Crown application

This Part binds the Crown.

Part 2 Litigation funding and costs

5Payments for legal services in civil cases

41 Conditional fee agreements: success fees

(1) In section 58 of the Courts and Legal Services Act 1990 (conditional fee
agreements), in subsection (2)—

(a) omit “and” after paragraph (a), and

(b) 10after paragraph (b) insert and

(c) references to a success fee, in relation to a conditional fee
agreement, are to the amount of the increase.

(2) After subsection (4) of that section insert—

(4A) The additional conditions are applicable to a conditional fee agreement
15which—

(a) provides for a success fee, and

(b) relates to proceedings of a description specified by order made
by the Lord Chancellor for the purposes of this subsection.

(4B) The additional conditions are that—

(a) 20the agreement must provide that the success fee is subject to a
maximum limit,

(b) the maximum limit must be expressed as a percentage of the
descriptions of damages awarded in the proceedings that are
specified in the agreement,

(c) 25that percentage must not exceed the percentage specified by
order made by the Lord Chancellor in relation to the
proceedings or calculated in a manner so specified, and

(d) those descriptions of damages may only include descriptions of
damages specified by order made by the Lord Chancellor in
30relation to the proceedings.

(3) In section 58A of that Act (conditional fee agreements: supplementary), in
subsection (5) after “section 58(4)” insert “, (4A) or (4B)”.

(4) For subsection (6) of that section substitute—

(6) A costs order made in proceedings may not include provision requiring
35the payment by one party of all or part of a success fee payable by
another party under a conditional fee agreement.

(5) In section 120(4) of that Act (regulations and orders subject to parliamentary
approval) after “58(4),” insert “(4A) or (4B),”.

(6) The amendment made by subsection (4) does not apply in relation to a success
40fee payable under a conditional fee agreement entered into before that
subsection comes into force.

Previous Next

Contents page 1-9 10-19 20-29 30-39 40-49 50-58 60-69 70-79 80-89 90-99 100-116 117-119 120-129 Last page