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The end of legal aid in immigration: A barrier to access to justice for migrants and a decline in the rule of law

York, Sheona (2013) The end of legal aid in immigration: A barrier to access to justice for migrants and a decline in the rule of law. Journal of Immigration, Asylum and Nationality Law, 27 (2). pp. 97-194. ISSN 1746-7632. (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided. (Contact us about this Publication)

Abstract

The Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act (LASPO) 2012 declared the end of legal aid in immigration in England and Wales except for a few strictly specified exceptions. Access to justice will be denied for large numbers of migrants and their families. The changes will also mean the large-scale removal of effective legal checks on UK Border Agency decision-making in immigration matters, a significant increase in litigants in person in the Tribunals and the High Court, an inevitable drop in quality of legal argument, and, arguably, in judicial decision-making. Immigration is of course not the only area of law in which this decline is likely to take place, but is the only area in which the loss of legal aid is likely to lead directly to the break-up of families and the removal of long-term residents from the UK in breach of their human rights. However, before we simply blame the recession, or the present government, we should look back over the years to see how the management of legal aid and legal advice in the broadest sense in the areas of immigration and asylum has been littered with unintended consequences including the chaos of perverse contractual incentives and the driving out of excellent, committed and brilliant lawyers, exhausted by the attempt to make quality pay. In this analysis we can see the declining quality of provision of publicly-funded legal services in immigration and asylum as a paradigm for a wider problem of how to maintain and improve standards in a public service delivered by a profession but controlled by price.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled keywords: immigration, legal aid, access to justice,
Subjects: K Law > KD England and Wales
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > Kent Law School
Depositing User: Sheona York
Date Deposited: 13 Nov 2014 15:17 UTC
Last Modified: 29 May 2019 13:29 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/44510 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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