There is a great probability that legal aid defendants in criminal cases would not be able to choose their own lawyer for the future. If they want they can also go for a fixed-fee legal advice online.
This plan appeared as an opposition to the idea of the justice secretary to cut legal aid.
In the words of Chris Grayling money could be saved as young and inexperienced lawyers are hired for legal aid cases. This meant that taxpayers would not keep on paying for a “legal ‘Rolls-Royce’” to defend the people who receive legal aid.
Critics, on the other hand, claim that less experienced solicitors could harm justice seriously.
However, critics pointed out that this would leave legal aid defendants in their access to justice.
Last Thursday Tory MPs declared that the state should be banned to choose a defendant’s solicitor or barrister.
The Commons Justice Committee chairman received a letter from Mr. Grayling in which he claimed he was ready to reconsider part of his plans on legal aid only if these could help to reduce legal aid spending.
“The rationale for proposing this change was to give greater certainty of case volume for providers, making it easier and more predictable for them to organise their businesses,” he wrote.
“However, I have heard clearly from the Law Society and other respondents that they regard client choice as fundamental to the effective delivery of criminal legal aid.”
He added he would think carefully once more and define whether clients receiving criminal legal aid have to be allowed to choose a solicitor or not.
The Law Society and Bar Council were both pleasantly surprised by the news.