New legal aid statistics

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The Legal Aid Agency has published its latest family work statistics, covering April to June 2019.

Family legal help starts increased by 10% compared to the same quarter last year. Completed claims decreased by 9% and expenditure decreased by 12%. There was a steep decline immediately following the implementation of LASPO in April 2013, with a more gradual decline over the last 2 to 3 years.

In family mediation, Mediation Information and Assessment Meetings increased by 14% in the last quarter compared to the previous year and currently stand at just over a third of pre-LASPO levels. Starts increased by 22% outcomes increased by 13% and are now sitting at around half of pre-LASPO levels.

Certificates granted for family work increased by 4% in April to June 2019 compared to the previous year (the previous January – March quarter saw a fall of 7%). Certificates completed increased by 5% compared to the same quarter the previous year. The associated expenditure has increased by 13% compared to the same quarter the previous year.

In April to June 2019, applications for civil representation supported by evidence of domestic violence or child abuse increased by 18% compared to the same period of the previous year. The number of these granted increased by 19% over the same period. The proportion of applications granted remained steady at around 70% from the inception of this type of application until the end of 2015, before increasing to around 80%. The provisional figure for the latest quarter is 80%.