Number of applications for interim legal aid payments down 45 per cent

The number of applications to the legal aid agency’s COVID-19 interim payment scheme has fallen sharply in its second full week of operation.

The Legal Services Agency (LSA) received 444 requests in the week ending 22 May 2020, a 45 per cent decline from 818 in the previous week.

The number of applications from barristers fell particularly sharply from 224 to 42, a decline of around 81 per cent.

Applications from solicitors fell by a relatively modest 32 per cent from 594 to 402.

In the week ending 22 May 2020, a total of £7,896 was authorised for payment to barristers and £120,183 was authorised for payment to solicitor firms.

The overall total paid to barristers since the scheme went live now stands at £59,052, while the total for solicitor firms stands at £328,465.

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