You may have seen articles talking about legal aid or changes to legal aid. It is designed to help people who need it, cover the costs of advice, mediation services or if you need to take a company to an employment or industrial tribunal. It is worth knowing what legal aid comprises of and whether or not you are eligible to claim it.
There are various factors involved in who can claim legal aid. One instance is if a defendant is likely to be at risk, such as someone involved in a domestic violence claim.
Other examples include people at risk of homelessness; there is evidence of discrimination against you; you require family mediation or the case is being brought in under the Human Rights Act.
The biggest criteria is if you have proof that you cannot afford to represent yourself. If you are successful in getting a positive verdict, there is the chance you may need to pay some costs back.
Making a claim
The UK government website has links that allow you to check whether or not you are able to make a claim. It is also possible for a legal representative to apply for this on your behalf. If you are arrested and charged at a police station, then you can apply for emergency aid or get free advice.
When talking to a legal aid representative, you will be expected to bring information such as details related to benefits, evidence of income (such as bank statements or payslips) and your National Insurance number. It is also important to bring evidence related to the case such as court documents, marriage and birth certificates (if it relates to a family issue) and any relevant letters. It is also important to discuss any changes to your financial situation to your legal advisor.
We want to help
It can be overwhelming when dealing with a legal issue. For example, going up against your own employer in an employment tribunal can be difficult, while any case involving family members can be particularly difficult to deal with. This is why it is important to go with a legal representative who understands this and work with you, going over the facts of the case but also in a sensitive way.
As a long-established family firm, we are sympathetic to the needs of our clients. The motto of Larcomes has often been “Big enough to specialise, small enough to care.” This means we can offer you legal representatives who specialise in a number of different fields. However, we also believe in being able to work closely with our clients, helping to understand how a case works and the likelihood of a positive verdict.
If you want to know more and want to see if you are eligible for legal aid, please contact us today, and we will be happy to discuss your case in more detail and help you decide whether or not to pursue the case further.