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Law Society responds to Supreme Court formal decision in residence test case

13 July 2016

Responding to the Supreme Court's written judgment in the legal aid residence test case, Law Society president Jonathan Smithers said:

'The Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (LASPO) was expressly designed by government to limit the availability of legal aid to the most serious cases, relating to life, health, liberty and home. The Supreme Court has today confirmed that, when passing LASPO, parliament did not intend that the government should be permitted to decide that a particular class of people are not entitled to justice in respect of these vital matters. Such a test - which in our view was clearly discriminatory - was not what parliament intended when it passed the act.

'We welcome this strong defence of the principle that the right to British justice applies to everyone who is subject to the laws of this country.'

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