The Legal Aid Board is seeking to ensure that, during this difficult period, its support services to private solicitors and barristers continue to be provided in so far as possible. We have issued some information below which covers both civil legal aid and our criminal legal aid ad-hoc schemes.
Keep up to date on information regarding opening of Court Offices and court lists on www.courts.ie
The courts are open for urgent business only. Practitioners should keep up to date on www.courts.ie for the most up to date information regarding the opening of courts offices and the holding of courts lists. Courts Service notice of 29th March 2020.
Civil Legal Aid Solicitors Panels
The Board is continuing to offer support services in relation to our solicitors panels. If you require an amendment to a legal aid certificate, you should apply in the normal manner. To ensure a timely turnaround of the decision, please provide all details required for the amendment as outlined in the applicable terms and conditions. We would ask that at this time you would send any queries in email rather than calling us as we will revert as soon as possible. Fees in relation to our schemes are still being processed as normal. We would ask if you have any outstanding claims to submit them in early course to ensure prompt processing.
Barristers providing services under the Board's terms and conditions for the retention of Counsel will be aware of the need to normally submit a paper claim form to the a law centre for approval by a Board solicitor. With due regard to the current circumstances, a temporary practice is being introduced whereby Counsel can email their claim form to the law centre / solicitor for approval for payment. We would ask if you have any outstanding claims to submit them in early course to ensure prompt processing.
Our Abhaile team is continuing to offer full services. Applications for legal aid in relations to s115a of the Personal Insolvency Act should continue to be made in the usual way. If you require an amendment to a legal aid certificate, you should apply in the normal way. Full details as regards regarding the necessity of the service being applied for must be provided, as outlined in the terms and conditions. Any outstanding fee claims should be submitted. To ensure prompt processing of said claim, please use the correct claim form and complete it in full together with any supporting documentation required. Practitioners are urged to check Courts Service website for up-to-date information regarding the holding of personal insolvency and possession lists.
Abhaile Duty Solicitor Scheme
Owing to the closure of the courts the Board will not be circulating Abhaile Duty Solicitor rota for the Easter term at this time. We would invite any outstanding claims for payment by Abhaile Duty Solicitors to be submitted for processing.
Criminal Legal Aid (Ad-hoc Schemes)
The Board manages three ad-hoc Criminal Legal Aid Schemes, namely the Garda Station Criminal Legal Aid Scheme, the Legal Aid – Custody Issues Scheme and the Criminal Assets Bureau Legal Aid Scheme. The processing of all claims for fees arising under these three Schemes carries on and you should continue to submit your claims in the normal manner. Please ensure that if you are submitting a claim that the relevant claim form is fully completed, legible and that it includes all the required supporting documentation.
If you have any queries relating to the processing of claims under any of the above mentioned three Schemes, please submit your query by email to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will be pleased to respond to you in due course.