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Family Law

The leading authority on all aspects of family law

15 APR 2013

The Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (Amendment of Schedule 1) Order 2013

This Order may be cited as the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 Amendment of Schedule 1) Order 2013 and comes into force on 1st April 2013.

This Order amends Schedule 1 to the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (c. 10) ("the Act"), which sets out the scope of civil legal aid.

Article 3 adds a new paragraph 8A to Part 1 of Schedule 1 to the Act to provide that civil legal services are available in relation to an appeal on a point of law to the High Court, the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court relating to a council tax reduction scheme. This new paragraph is subject to the exclusions in Part 2 of Schedule 1 of the Act. Advocacy before the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court for these cases is in scope by virtue of paragraphs 1 and 2 of Part 3 of Schedule 1, but advocacy before the High Court is excluded for these cases.

Article 4 amends the definition of domestic violence in paragraphs 12, 28 and 29 of Part 1 of Schedule 1 to the Act, to cover incidents, or patterns of incidents, of controlling and coercive behaviour.

Article 5 amends paragraph 18 of Part 1 of Schedule 1 to the Act to provide that civil legal services are available in relation to an application under Article 10 of the Convention on the international recovery of child support and other forms of family maintenance concluded at The Hague on 23 November 2007, for the recognition, enforcement or establishment of a decision in relation to maintenance. Civil legal services will also be available to an individual for proceedings in England and Wales in relation to recognition and enforcement of a maintenance decision where the individual makes a request directly to a competent authority for recognition and enforcement of the decision. Legal aid will only be available in these circumstances if the individual previously received legal aid in the State of origin.

Articles 6 and 7 amend Schedule 1 to the Act in respect of civil legal services provided in relation to judicial review. Article 7 adds to Part 2 of Schedule 1 a new exclusion for civil legal services provided in relation to judicial review of an enactment, decision, act or omission. Article 6 provides an exception to this exclusion in paragraph 19(2) of Part 1 of Schedule 1. This ensures that legal aid is available for judicial review only as set out in paragraph 19 of Part 1 of Schedule 1to the Act, which continues to be subject to a number of general and specific exclusions.

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