News and Insights
1 April 2022
For several years now, I was part of the team, negotiating changes to the legal aid system which had been in place for many decades but with no financial contribution from the Government and with Jersey lawyers shouldering the whole cost as a result. The existing system was also deficient in that those receiving legal aid had no choice at all as to which lawyer they were allocated to. Change needed to happen, and the result is that from the 1 April 2022 legal aid in Jersey has entered the 21st century.
For those who are allocated a legal aid certificate for a criminal matter there is now a panel of over 30 specialist criminal advocates who they can choose from. Anyone who does not wish to choose their advocate will have one allocated to them from this panel and the criminal scheme is now funded. Viberts have four accredited advocates on the panel available to people receiving criminal legal aid.
Family law matters are still not funded by the Government and will continue to be allocated as under the old scheme. This means that for those who still qualify for legal aid for family law matters, they will not be able to choose their lawyer. However, the financial eligibility to qualify for this type of legal aid have changed and where there are no dependent children legal aid is very restricted.
Viberts have long been committed to provide family law advice to all whether legally aided or not and we have a large and experienced team who can deal with all types of family law issues. We also recognise that many cannot afford full private client rates and therefore Viberts have developed a completely new product for those with limited incomes and capital called ‘Family Aid’. This is designed to provide an affordable solution for those who will no longer qualify for legal aid and who would really benefit from expert legal advice.
‘Family Aid’ at Viberts is available to anyone who earns a gross income of £50,000 or less and has capital of less than £100,000 (excluding pensions but including any equity in a property) for all types of family law advice.
Anyone who thinks they might qualify should contact ‘Family Aid’ at Viberts on telephone number 632267 or email firstname.lastname@example.org