Civil legal aid residence test is ultra vires [updated]
19 Tuesday Apr 2016
After yesterday’s hearing in R (The Public Law Project) v Lord Chancellor, the Supreme Court announced that the civil legal aid residence test in the draft Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act (Amendment of Schedule 1) Order 2014 was ultra vires the enabling statute. Written reasons to follow.
The second issue before the Court (whether the test was unjustifiably discriminatory and so in breach of common law and the Human Rights Act 1998) may therefore not be heard – the case has been adjourned while this is considered.
Public Law Project have a great Q&A page about the appeal here.
Update: The Court’s press announcement now reads “The Court indicated that it did not consider it necessary to hear argument on issue (2) [on discrimination]. The hearing in this appeal has now concluded”.
PLP’s press announcement is here.