Tackling hardship – Getting tough on benefit sanctions

A Public Law Project initiative is underway to help Universal Credit claimants avoid benefit sanctions. The new website, www.claimantcommitments.org.uk, has been launched successfully with support from the Matrix Causes Fund and aims to provide claimants and advisers with the information they need to ensure that claimant commitments are tailored to individual circumstances. What is the…

Wales 2020

The Public Law Project is pleased to confirm that it will be able to provide more focused and direct public law support in Wales as of 2020. A key part of this support will be a new PLP lawyer focused on Wales. Our current plans are for this role to: Work with civil society organisations…

Exceptional Case Funding Clinics: Toolkit launch

PLP’s solicitor Katy Watts has written a toolkit on setting up ECF clinics. The legal aid Exceptional Case Funding (ECF) scheme is intended to be a human rights ‘safety net’ to avoid breaches of people’s rights, ensuring access to legal aid even when it would not normally be available. ECF clinics help people access ECF…

COURT REFORM: COMMONS COMMITTEE SAYS ACCESS TO JUSTICE FIRST

The Justice Select Committee has published its report on the court and tribunal reform programme. PLP Director Jo Hickman said: “The Justice Committee report rightly asserts that access to justice must be the primary focus for the court reform programme and that cost savings and efficiencies should come second. “The recommendations reflect many of the…

PLP Response to Commission on Justice in Wales report

The Commission on Justice in Wales has today published Justice in Wales for the People of Wales, a review of how the justice system operates in Wales and recommendations for its future. The Public Law Project submitted three reports to the Commission: The effects of LASPO on civil legal aid in Wales Judicial Review in…

Withdrawal Agreement Bill – Public Law Project briefing

Withdrawal Agreement Bill – Public Law Project briefing The European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill (WAB) has been ‘paused’ for now. The Bill may nevertheless resume progress through Parliament, possibly at short notice. The Public Law Project briefing on the Bill has brought to the attention of parliamentarians the unjustifiably broad delegated powers that the Bill…

PLP update on Freedom of establishment regulation

Speaking for the Government in yesterday’s debate on the Freedom of Establishment and Free Movement of Services (EU Exit) Regulations 2019, Business Minister Nadhim Zahawi gave reassurances that the changes proposed will not impact on EU citizens’ rights and will not impose additional restrictions on EU nationals. He said: “First, with respect to the practical…

Freedom of Establishment Regulations briefing

EU SELF EMPLOYED WORKERS: RIGHTS UNDER THREAT FROM ‘UNLAWFUL’ REGULATIONS Regulations that could strip EU workers of the right to be self-employed in the UK are up for debate in the House of Commons on Monday as legal charity Public Law Project warns that Government plans to make use of controversial Henry VIII powers may…

Government withdraws plans to make Brexit laws ‘by decree’

GOVERNMENT FORCED TO WITHDRAW PLANS TO MAKE BREXIT LAWS ‘BY DECREE’ In response to a challenge by the Public Law Project, the Government has agreed to shelve plans for civil servants to make Brexit legislation by ‘public notice’, a controversial Henry VIII style power recently described by a committee of MPs as “a modern form…

GOVERNMENT TO GIVE APPEAL RIGHTS TO EU CITIZENS

The new Immigration Bill is set to give EU citizens and family members the right to appeal decisions made through the EU Settlement Scheme, even if the UK leaves the EU without a deal. Prior the Queen’s Speech, the Government’s position was that the right to appeal would be contained in the Withdrawal Agreement Bill…

Legal aid lawyers hold key to legal aid policy

With the latest Ministry of Justice figures showing that Exceptional Case Funding (ECF) applications remain stubbornly low, the Public Law Project is calling on practitioners to complete a survey about how the legal aid scheme is used and why it is not working as it should. TAKE THE SURVEY Evidence from the survey will be…

EU Citizens’ rights in the event of a no-deal Brexit

OCTOBER UPDATE In the event of a no-deal Brexit, what does the law say about the rights of EU citizens living in the UK? As the outcome of the latest Brexit negotiations are still uncertain — and with 31 October less than one month away – the latest research update from the Public Law Project…