Top Judge Says Civil Justice Unaffordable - We Can Help
Judith Thompson 14-01-2016
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The Lord chief justice believes that civil justice is unaffordable for most people. This is an understable view in the current climate. Judges are hearing more and more case where people are representing themselves rather than using solicitors, and the reasons for this are complex:
- legal aid has all but disappeared;
- changes to the law on conditional (no win no fee) agreements mean less solicitors are willing to offer them;
- in some cases legal expenses insurance is becoming harder to obtain; and
- huge rises in court fees (opposed by judges and solicitors alike) mean paying for representation on top is not possible for many people.
The Lord chief justice reflects these problems when he says “our system of justice has become unaffordable to most ... in consequence there has been a considerable increase of litigants in person for whom our current court system is not really designed."
Litigants in person can be at a significant disadvantage if they are up against an opponent who is instructing a solicitor and there have been several cases recently where representing yourself has not been allowed to excuse non-compliance with court orders, such as filing the correct documents, or producing statements on time. The likelihood is that litigants in person have lost potentially good cases, because they have made technical errors.
The Lord chief justice stressed “the importance of the judicial system in maintaining a just and fair society ... and a strong economy”. Small businesses can be crippled by non payment of debts that are too expensive to chase through the courts.
At Samuels Solicitors, we are committed to assisting our clients obtain access to justice wherever possible. We have clients all over our native Devon, as well as throughout the UK, who take advantage of our flexible funding options which can include conditional no win no fee) agreements where appropriate.
If you are struggling with a case on your own, contact us today for a free no obligation chat about how we can help you.