30th August - Law News

2439th Edition: LawNewsIndex is a UK based news & legal articles archive focusing on Law, Lawyers, Law Firms, Justice, Legislation, Legal Ethics, Human Rights & Social Justice issues.

Today's Video Focus: An investigation into the alleged links between the illegal rhino horn trade and corruption in Zululand's courts and its national parks.

Focus of the Day Article:
The Legal Aid Agency breached its duty to be transparent and clear when it failed to disclose its 'calculator' for assessing counsel's fees for what is expected to be a complex fraud trial, the High Court has ruled. Giving the lead judgment in Ames v The Lord Chancellor, which was handed down and published yesterday, Lord Justice Holroyde said he could not understand why the agency declined to disclose the calculator. 'The LAA, in our judgment, plainly owes a duty of transparency and clarity in relation to the operation of the "calculator". Even without that duty, we would have expected the LAA to want advocates to know the basis on which their fees were being assessed in [very high cost cases], not to keep it a secret. It would surely be advantageous to the LAA, in its negotiations with advocates, to be able to demonstrate why and how the use of the "calculator" has led to a particular fee offer.'

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