Rights of Women win significant victory over the Government at the Court of Appeal on Legal Aid Domestic Violence Evidence Requirements.
In the August 2015 roundup I wrote about the ongoing issues with Legal Aid and domestic violence regulations both at a national level and at an international level with the United Nations CEDAW Committee. This morning Rights of Women scored a massive legal victory over the Government in the Court of Appeal when the Court of Appeal ruled that domestic violence regulations were unlawful.
Everyone working on the front line with victims of violence will be aware that in order to obtain Legal Aid it is necessary to prove that you are a victim of violence and that you have been a victim within the last 24 months. This judgment confirms what all women’s organisations have been saying to the Ministry of Justice since before LASPO became law, namely that LASPO does not in any way recognise the reality of what life is like for women living with violence. Today’s judgment confirms that this is the case.
This is a tremendous outcome and we are all extremely excited about it. I am a member of the expert advisory board of Rights of Women and provided two witness statements for the hearings first of all at the High Court and then in the Court of Appeal. Further DV/VAW Law Roundups will deal with the developments as they unfold.