05 September 2013

The Bar Standards Board responds to new proposals for criminal legal aid

Director of the Bar Standards Board, Dr Vanessa Davies said:

"We note that the Government has modified its proposals for the planned legal aid reforms and look forward to studying the detail. With regards to the proposed review of criminal advocacy, we are looking forward to engaging constructively with the review, with the public interest as our focus.

"Price competitive tendering (PCT) for criminal defence work appears to have been removed from the proposals. There can now be absolutely no doubt, as we have always maintained, that there is no link between PCT and QASA. The Scheme will, as planned, be launched on 30 September 2013."


Notes to editor

In July 2013, the Justice Secretary, Chris Grayling MP, told the Justice Select Committee: "[QASA] is nothing to do with the Government or me, and it is nothing that I have a vested interest in one way or the other."

QASA is due to launch on 30 Sept and will be implemented in 3 stages
• phase one: 30 September 2013 to 7 March 2014 - Midland and Western circuits,
• phase two: 10 March 2014 to 13 June 2014 - South Eastern circuit,
• phase three: 30 June 2014 to 3 October 2014 - North East, Northern, Wales and Chester circuits.

Contact: the Bar Standards Board Press Office on 02076111452.