A funding order cutting the fees of criminal legal aid advocates will be laid before both houses of Parliament today.

Justice secretary Jack Straw has decided to cut graduated fees by 4.5 per cent every year for the next three years and reduce the number of VHCC cases by increasing the threshold from 40 to 60 days.

It has been estimated that only around ten of 100 VHCC cases every year last for more than 60 days. The cuts in fees would be implemented on 27 April 2010 and the extension of the threshold on 14 July 2010.

The Bar Council has already launched a judicial review on the grounds that the consultation exercises for both measures were inadequate and unfair (see solicitorsjournal.com 16 February 2010).


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