The Legal Services Commission (LSC) has signalled its intention to end all Community Legal Advice Centres and Networks (CLAC and CLAN) by 31st March 2013.
The LSC has written to all contract holders and partner local authorities to inform them of this proposal in light of the government reforms on legal aid.
CLACs and CLANs were introduced to be a one stop shop for clients with social welfare and family legal issues, and with the legal aid reforms focusing on removing most of the scope of this type of legal aid, the LSC claim that CLAC/Ns are no longer likely to be financially viable.
At Swain &Co.we condemn yet another legal aid cut. The purpose of legal aid is to promote access to justice, and this is yet another act that goes against this objective. This will wipe out the only remaining suppliers of general advice inManchester, Gateshead, Leicester, Derby, Hull, East Riding of Yorkshire, West Sussex,Wakefieldand Barking and Dagenham. We would like to know how the government intends to ensure availability of advice after March 2013.