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Law Centre Waiting Times and Other Statistical Information

This page gives information on applications, waiting times, appointments, and referrals to private solicitors at each of our law centres.

Latest information - September 2018

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About the statistics

What does the number of solicitors figure mean?

This is the number of solicitors who work in the law centre, converted into full time equivalents. This means that if a solicitor works part time, they will be expressed as a fraction. For example, if a solicitor only works three days a week, they will be counted as 0.6.

What does the number of applications figure mean?

This is the number of completed applications for civil legal aid and advice the law centre received in the month, along with the number of applications received in the year to date. Sometimes, for various reasons, we get an application for civil legal aid and advice that leaves out information we need to process that application. We offer the person a chance to give us the information, but sometimes they do not get back to us. In that case the application will not be included in this number.

Are there any applications for civil legal aid and advice omitted from these figures?

Yes, these figures omit a substantial number of applications received at our office in the District Court building at Dolphin House, East Essex Street, Dublin 2. They also omit a very small number of applications that are received at our medical negligence unit.

What do the Waiting for First Consultation figures refer to?

In nearly all of our law centres, a person will have to wait a period before they see a solicitor. The Max Waiting Time tells you many weeks the person who was waiting longest for a first consultation at the end of the month has been waiting since we decided that they were financially eligible for legal advice. The Numbers Waiting tells how many were waiting for a first consultation in the law centre.  The Priority figure tells you how many were waiting that had their application identified as needing an priority appointment with a solicitor. Matters that will be given a priority service include domestic violence, childcare, and child abduction.

What do the Waiting for Second Consultation figures refer to?

In most of our law centres, we are unable to provide a substantial service within four months. We will still try to give them a first consultation in four months, but they will have to wait longer before we can provide any further services. This is called 'waiting for a second consultation'.

The Max Waiting Time tells you how many weeks the person who is waiting longest for a second consultation at the end of the month had been waiting since their first consultation. The Numbers Waiting tells how many were waiting for a second consultation in the law centre. 

Why do some law centres have “0” under their Waiting for Second Consultation figures?

If the law centre can provide a substantive service within four months, they will not need to ask anyone to wait for a second consultation. 

What do the appointments held figures mean?

These show the number of first consultations, second consultations, and priority appointments the law centre held in the year to date. 

Are there any first appointments omitted from these figures?

Yes. In asylum and subsidiary protection cases we deliver our service in a different way to most other matters. Civil legal aid and advice in asylum cases is provided at Smithfield, Cork Popes Quay, and Galway Seville House law centres only. These cases are generally treated as priority and do not have to wait for a service. We expect to include data in relation to these cases in the near future.

What are referrals to private solicitors?

Most civil legal aid work is done by solicitors working in law centres who are employees of the Legal Aid Board. In some cases we refer our clients to solicitors in private practice. This is mainly done in two main areas:

  • District Court private family law: these are applications to the District Court for domestic violence orders, orders to do with the welfare of children, and for maintenance. 
  • Circuit Court judicial separation and divorce.

We have published the numbers referred by each law centre in the year to date.

What referrals to private solicitors are not included?

In Dublin, most referrals to private solicitors in District Court private family law matters are done from our office in the District Court building at Dolphin House. These referrals are not included here. We also refer applicants to private solicitors in asylum and subsidiary protection cases. These are also not included in the statistics published here. 

How often you publish this information?

We publish this information every month. We will normally post the information for any given month in the week after our Board has received the information. This date may differ from month to month, and because our Board does not meet in August, there may be a delay in publishing information for July.

Where can I find previously published statistical information?

You can find previously published information here.