Last month, Minister of State for Justice Simon Hughes announced that £2 million has been set aside towards a package of support for LIPs, with the apparent primary aim of resolving disputes without the involvement of the courts, but also supporting LiPs if their disputes do make it to the courts. That’s what various legal publications published. The Guardian, however, spoke of 1.4 million per year.
The funding is intended for the following:
- Expansion of the Personal Support Unit (currently only present at a few locations in the UK);
- The RCJ Advice Bureau (which helps claimants and defendants at the High Court or Court of Appeal at the Royal Court of Justice & County Courts across England and Wales, the family court at the Principal Registry of the Family Division or any other family court, and
the bankruptcy court at the Royal Court of Justice);
- LawWorks (he country’s leading legal pro bono charity for solicitors, in-house counsel, mediators and students); and
- Law for Life, a public legal education charity.
This initiative is the result of the November 2011 report “Access to Justice for Litigants in Person (or self-represented litigants)“.