• Text size      
  • Send this article to a friend
  • Print this article

Lawyers warn of further protests

LEGAL professionals have warned of further protest action over plans to change the legal aid system.

Defence lawyers said protests over the Scottish Government's plans will continue after three days of action in recent weeks, including day-long strikes.

The Edinburgh Bar Association, which led the action, met Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill last week to discuss the plans. He stated he would raise the disposable income threshold to £82 from £68 a week.

But in a statement yesterday, the association said Mr MacAskill had offered "no meaningful negotiation" and dismissed his offer as "irrelevant".

"We believe that, as a consequence of the cumulative cuts to summary legal aid fees in particular, fewer young solicitors will enter private practice as criminal defence lawyers. The Scottish Legal Aid Board's stated intention to make further cuts can only make the problem more acute," it added.

"EBA members voted to continue and widen its protest action in the face of the real threat to the existence of the independent criminal bar.

"We continue to enjoy the support of colleagues all over the country and of the Law Society of Scotland."

The association warning comes after the Law Society of Scotland also indicated it remained at loggerheads over the legal aid issue with the Scottish Government.

Contextual targeting label: 
Business

Commenting & Moderation

We moderate all comments on HeraldScotland on either a pre-moderated or post-moderated basis.
If you're a relatively new user then your comments will be reviewed before publication and if we know you well and trust you then your comments will be subject to moderation only if other users or the moderators believe you've broken the rules

Moderation is undertaken full-time 9am-6pm on weekdays, and on a part-time basis outwith those hours. Please be patient if your posts are not approved instantly.

130640