What is Legal Aid?
Legal Aid, also known as Public Funding, is provided by the Government in order to assist people in obtaining access to justice. The service is managed by the ‘Legal Aid Agency’ (LAA). For those who qualify, funding is available to pay legal fees, including advice and representation.
Only certain law firms can undertake publicly funded work, as they have to be authorised by the LAA. Ben Hoare Bell can provide Legal Aid in Family Law, Housing, Criminal Law, Mental Health, Actions against the Police and Clinical Negligence. This demonstrates our on going commitment for working with clients who require Legal Aid.
Legal Aid Changes
April 2013 saw a huge change in civil Legal Aid. New legislation has put some legal issues out of the scope of Legal Aid, or very strict qualification rules have been implemented.
However, Legal Aid is still available for many areas of law. Therefore do not assume that you are not eligible for public funding. Ben Hoare Bell is committed to ensuring that you receive any Legal Aid that you are entitled to. We offer a dedicated service whereby we assess your situation in detail in order to establish whether you could be entitled to Legal Aid.
For more information on the changes in Legal Aid click here.
Am I Eligible for Legal Aid?
In some cases (care and supervision and police station advice) Legal Aid is available whatever your means are. In most cases you must be financially eligible. This takes into account your income and any savings that you have as well as the income and capital of your spouse or partner (if you live with them).
There are situations where you might qualify for some Legal Aid, and you will have to make contributions from your own funds.
If you qualify for Legal Aid there are various documents that you need to bring to our first meeting. A member of the Ben Hoare Bell team will inform you which documents you need to bring. To ensure we can progress your case quickly please ensure you bring these with you.
In order to adapt to the changes and remain committed to clients who have been disadvantaged by the Legal Aid cuts Ben Hoare Bell has introduced a variety of payment schemes.
Ben Hoare Bell offer competitive fixed fee packages across a range of services. This gives you the certainty of legal costs and eradicates any unexpected and unmanageable bills. We are clear from the start about what you will pay and what you can expect from us.
Our fixed fees allow you to choose only the package which your personal circumstances require, allowing you to take full control. You decide what you need and what you can afford. You know what you will be paying before each stage of the process, so there will be no nasty surprises at the end.
We recognise that each individual will have different requirements and that is why we break our services down into affordable packages for you to choose from and then we let you take control.
ASSISTED FEE SCHEME
This is available for Family Law clients who receive benefits or who have a low monthly income. We will assess your means and if you have a disposable income below a certain limit you may be eligible for our Assisted Fee Scheme.
If you would like to be assessed for our Assisted Fee Scheme please contact a member of our Family team.
NO WIN NO FEE
This payment option is sometimes available for Clinical Negligence and Personal Injury claims. This means exactly what it says. If your case is not successful you will not pay our fees. We believe that by offering this service it levels out the playing field so that we can fight your corner without you worrying about unexpected bills. This also reassures you that we are fully committed to your claim and will dedicate our expertise to ensuring success.
Ben Hoare Bell continues to offer the traditional payment scheme of an hourly rate. We will be clear with you from the start and we allow different payment options such as standing order, cash or payment by card over the phone or in the office.