During a case, it may become apparent to you or counsel your client:

  • Has adopted an unreasonable attitude to the conduct of the case.
  • Is possibly incurring unjustifiable expense to public funds.
  • Has withheld relevant information or has given false or misleading information.

If no action is taken there will be an abuse of legal aid.

Therefore, it is your duty, in terms of Regulation 24 of the Children’s Legal Assistance (Scotland) Regulations 2013 and the duty of counsel to draw the matter immediately to our attention.  You must tell us if your client:

  • For no good reason declines your advice or counsel’s advice about acceptance of the Statement of Grounds and any alleged supporting facts.
  • Insists on prolonging the case solely with a view to procrastination.
  • Seeks to continue with an appeal when they will gain no material advantage.

This duty overrides any duty of confidentiality owed to your client because of any privilege arising out of the relationship between solicitor, counsel and client.  This is an exception to the stipulation in section 31(7) of the Legal Aid (Scotland) Act 1986 that legal aid is not to affect the relationship between solicitor, counsel and client or their respective rights.

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