What is Legal Aid?

Legal Aid is public funding that provides either full or part payment (depending on an individuals income and circumstances) to legal practitioners who are representing people either during the investigation of an offence or throughout legal proceedings in the Falkland Islands.  It is set out in the Legal Aid Ordinance 2020 and Legal Aid Regulations 2020.

Not all cases attract legal aid and the Legal Aid Ordinance and Regulations detail the test that is applied when considering whether the grant of legal aid is merited.

Dependant upon someone's financial circumstances, legal aid may be granted with a requirement that a percentage of the overall cost of representation and/or a lump sum contribution amount is paid by the represented person. All grants of Legal Aid for representation are given a financial limit and detail what they are granted for.

Who Administers Legal Aid?

Legal Aid is administered by the Courts.  The court staff deal with the administration of all applications made, including applications for payment. Any bills submitted to the court for payment may be assessed. Assessment is a process whereby the Courts consider the work undertaken by the legal practitioner and determine if a) the work is covered by the Oridinance and b) whether that work was necessary to effectively manage and advance the case