Legal Aid – still available for family mediation

From 1st April, the Legal Aid Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 Reform Act (LASPO) came into effect. This resulted in the withdrawel of many areas of civil and criminal Legal Aid, in order for the Ministry of Justice to achieve savings of £250 million.

legalaidOne of the few areas where Legal Aid still remains, is family mediation. To coincide with the changes, an additional 23 mediation services successfully bid for new contacts to provide Legal Aid in December 2012, a further 59 commenced on the 1st April 2013.

However one side effect of the Reform, is the misunderstanding by lawyers and the general public, that Legal Aid is unavailable for family mediation. As a result of this, the number of referrals for family mediation has plummeted since the 1st April.

Findmediation.co.uk has an extensive database comprising of nearly 600 services and outreach locations. This includes all family mediation services contracted to the Legal Aid Agency for providing Legal Aid. Simply select a town or County and a list of services are displayed.  Those providing Legal Aid to eligible clients have the Community Legal Services logo (shown above) displayed alongside the entry.

Family Mediation NorthumberlandIn this example, Northumberland was selected as the county on the home page.

The results show 7 matches available for the area, with those providing Legal Aid displaying the Community Legal Services logo to the right of the service details.

 

 

Legal Aid is STILL available for family mediation.

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