Applicant access to digital Form 2 being piloted

We are working to introduce a secure, digital Form 2 (the Civil Financial Assessment form) for applicants to use.

Prior to launching the new Form 2 we are running a pilot with a number of firms to trial this new service with applicants who want to use it.

The pilot will be in stages:

  • This stage of the pilot allows applicants to send us the Form 2 and supporting documentation using a digital portal
  • Subsequent stages of the pilot will allow applicants to communicate with us securely using the portal.

We’ll be providing applicants with telephone and email support to complete the Form 2. We’ll be collating feedback from applicants to help inform the operation of the system.

Once the online Form 2 goes live for general use a paper version of the form will continue to be available to applicants who do not wish to use the digital application process.

What are the benefits of the online Form 2?

  1. We can start to offer digital services to civil legal aid applicants
  2. The forms will be easier to complete: the questions will be filtered based on applicants’ answers; it will be clearer which questions need to be answered and what documentation the applicant needs to be send to us
  3. Applicants will have a secure workspace to send information, including attachments. They’ll be able to use it to communicate with us and view all the information they send to us
  4. The applicant will receive an early indication of their eligibility status: an automated, preliminary calculation (based on the information the applicant submits) will estimate the potential contribution. We’ll go on to do a full assessment and detailed calculation of the contribution due
  5. You’ll be updated about your client’s progress through Legal Aid Online.

Changes to Legal Aid Online

We have made some minor changes to the Civ/Sol form which are applicable to all applicants.

To improve our options for communicating with applicants, we have introduced a new field to capture applicants’ email addresses.

If you don’t already do so it would be helpful if you could get your clients’ email addresses whenever possible.

This gives us an electronic method to contact applicants, many of whom prefer to use this method of communication. We have also included the telephone number field for all applicants.

We have also introduced a ‘Prefer not say’ option for the applicant’s gender.  This was unrelated to the development of the Form 2, but was an outstanding issue that we have included in this deployment.

Contact

If you have any questions about the new online Form 2 or would like further details please contact – Cathrin Innes: innesca@slab.org.uk