01 March 2012
Providers will not be financially disadvantaged by digital service of evidence when claiming under the Litigator or Advocate Graduated Fee Scheme
We understand this has been a concern for defence practitioners.
Evidence that originally existed in paper form, which has been scanned and served by the prosecution, is included currently in the definition of pages of prosecution evidence (PPE) when calculating the graduated fee under the Litigator and Advocate Graduated Fee Scheme.
From 1 April, the CJS Efficiency Programme aims to serve case files electronically. This will include evidence that has only ever existed in digital form.
To support the programme, the Ministry of Justice is currently consulting with the Law Society and Bar Council to amend the definition of pages of prosecution evidence so that it includes evidence that has only ever existed digitally.
This will mean there is no impact on the Crown Court fee as a result of digital working.
Other amendments to the Funding Order include:
• corrections following the implementation of recent legal aid reforms
• clarification of transfer scenarios under the LGFS
Subject to the above-mentioned consultation, which closes on 2 March, the Funding Order will to come into force in April 2012. The LSC will provide guidance.