Guidelines for making submissions
The outline of the case should include relevant factual information and a concise assessment of the applicant’s case in law. The statement should include also, any further comments or information that the solicitor may wish to submit on the matter. A typed version of any hand-written document from the applicant in relation to the appeal should be included where the document is not easily legible.
An opinion from a solicitor is not required for an appeal and the solicitor should not make a recommendation as to whether or not legal aid should be granted in the appeal committee submission.
It is essential that an appeal committee has sufficient information to make a decision on any application. Where a refusal is based upon a point of law, the appeal should set out why it is believed that the applicant has a good case in law. This does not mean that the solicitor has to delve into case law for every appeal or to argue the obvious, in detail, but it does mean that when the legal basis is not very clear, solicitors will have to exercise their own judgement in each case as to how much legal argument should be presented.
A fully completed submission is an absolute requirement for any cases placed before the committee where the refusal was for any reason other than financial eligibility grounds. Legal Services may decline to forward a submission to the Committee where it is not fully completed and refer it back to the solicitor concerned.