Updated guidance and claim forms are now available on GOV.UK for litigators and advocates for Crown Court fee claims.
A number of changes have been made, especially to support the submission of claims for unused material and paper heavy cases.
Why is this happening now?
The updated guidance and forms are needed because most of the criminal legal aid review (CLAR) accelerated measures came into force on 17 September 2020.
What is now available?
The updated guidance covers:
paper heavy cases
sending cases to the Crown Court
The new and revised forms cover:
unused preparation work
special preparation work
What else is on the way?
A further separate consultation on how litigators are paid for pre-charge engagement with the prosecution will take place in the autumn.
A new payment fee to cover ‘sending hearings’ for cases moving on to the Crown Court comes into force on 19 October 2020. Amendments are being made to the 2017 crime contract to support this change and will be published soon.
The next phase of CLAR will be a wide-ranging and independently-led review of the criminal legal aid system.
This will be run alongside work to ensure that fee schemes, especially crime lower ones, are consistent with and enable wider reforms.