Sending civil legal aid applications with out-of-date financial information will cause the application to be rejected

Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014

Applications for civil legal aid must contain up-to-date financial information. An application should be submitted as soon as possible after being signed by an applicant to ensure its processing isn’t delayed.

We receive a number of applications for civil legal aid where the application appears to have been signed by the applicant a considerable amount of time prior to date of submission, in some cases by as much as three to six months. Applications of this nature are usually accompanied by supporting financial information, such as bank statements, which are also as old as six months. With such information, it is not possible for us to carry out a reasonable and/or accurate assessment of the applicant’s likely disposable income and disposable capital during the computation period, which runs for 12 months from the date the application is made to SLAB. As a result we have to reject applications of this nature.

We have discussed this with a number of firms who have recently submitted applications of this nature. We understand that some practical difficulties and delays can arise due to staffing issues within solicitors’ offices and due to difficulties in obtaining up to date instructions and/or supporting financial information from clients.

However, if such difficulties or delays arise, please be aware of the need to obtain up-to-date declarations and documentation from your clients and to complete and submit a fresh Form 2 and civil legal aid mandate.

For more information:

Joe Kelly, Head of Civil and Children’s Legal Assistance: 0131 240 2031


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