Thursday 28 March 2013

Pre-Easter roundup of legal news - (2)

Following on from the previous post, further legal news:

1.  Major parts of Legal Aid Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 come in to force on 1 April 2013 including the severe cuts to civil legal aid provision enacted by LASPO Part 1.

2.  Youth Conditional Cautions are in force on 8th April 2013. There is a code of practice - LINK

3.  The Home Office is consulting about changes to Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 - Codes A, B, E and F - (Closes 10th May 2013)

4.  The Ministry of Justice is consulting about - Implementing the coroner reforms in Part 1 of the Coroners and Justice Act 2009  - (Closes 12 April 2013)

5.  The appointments of 10 new members of the Court of Appeal have been announced - Appointment of Lord and Lady Justices of Appeal  The appointments are to fill forthcoming vacancies in the Court of Appeal arising over 2013.  Vacancies arise due to the elevation of Sir Terence Etherton, Sir Roger Toulson and Sir Anthony Hughes, the retirements of Sir Alan Ward and Sir Malcolm Pill, and the forthcoming retirements of Lord Judge, Sir Bernard Rix, Sir Mathew Thorpe, Sir John Mummery and Sir Timothy Lloyd.

The appointments are well covered by the Of Interest to Lawyers Blog

6. The Guide to Judicial Conduct has been updated.

7.  See David Anderson QC's evidence to the Joint Committee on Human Rights -Review of The Terrorism Prevention and Investigation Measures Regime

8.  See Garden Court North Chambers for Bulletins on Housing and Criminal law as well as other items of interest.  These resources are free and GCN is to be congratulated on making them publicly available.

9.  Prisoner voting was kicked into the long grass when the government published a draft Bill but there are some rumblings in the grass - for an update see ECHR Blog 

10.  On 1st April, there are major changes to the benefits system - see the Guardian 27th March 'Welfare cust will cost disabled people £28 bn over five years'.    On 28th March, a Guardian article claims that 'Monday will be the day that defines this government' .  The author (Polly Toynbee) states: 'Here is the final wicked twist: legal aid has been removed for advice on benefits, housing, divorce, debt, education and employment. On Monday the budget of Citizens Advice for such cases falls from £22m to £3m. The few emergency cases still covered – families facing instant eviction – can only use a phone service, not face-to-face legal help. Law centres will close. There will be no help on school exclusions, landlord or employer harassment, or failure to pay wages.'

11.  Easter Law Term commences 9th April and ends on 24th May.

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