New and improved Online Mandates

Monday, May 30, 2016

New, quicker, easier forms

This update provides information about new and improved online mandates which:

  • Are better designed and more concise
  • Will be quicker and easier for you to complete
  • Have taken into account your comments and feedback on previous versions
  • Have the same look and flow across all aid types for ease of completion
  • Clarify our ability to seek information from third parties about the applicant’s finances and the timeframe over which we may do so.
  • Removes duplication of information to be provided by the solicitor about the case.
  • Allow you to get better financial information from the applicant to speed up the decision making process.

New Mandates go live on 23 June 2016

We plan to remove the existing mandates from our website and replace them with our new online mandates on 23 June 2016. From that date the old mandate forms should not be used, and any existing stocks you may have of them should be destroyed.

Why do we need mandate forms?

Mandates are used to provide contemporaneous evidence of the grant of advice and assistance/ABWOR. The grant is made by you and when you send us the application through Legal Aid Online, you are registering the grant you have already made. For civil/criminal/children’s legal aid and some types of ABWOR, the mandate is a key part of the process and is evidence of the applicant’s confirmation that an application is being made.

The mandate is also an important document for the applicant. They sign declarations including: the information provided is correct; that they understand and consent to the application being made; that they consent to information being requested from third parties (for example, banks, employers and HMRC); and that they consent to the file being used for Quality Assurance purposes. 

What has changed?

We have designed these new mandates to look and flow, so far as possible, the same across all aid and application types.  The content of the mandates has been substantially reviewed and is now limited to personal data about the applicant only (and their partner/spouse if appropriate). It no longer requires information about other details provided in the online application, for example, regarding the merits of the application.  This change facilitates a quicker and easier completion of the online mandate in the presence of the applicant.

The forms also give you the opportunity to get better financial information from your client before the application is made to us.  This will help us take quicker decisions and reduce the need to continue so many cases for further financial information.  This should help save time and effort for everyone, particularly you and your clients.  

The design of the new mandate forms now meets recommendations made by the Scottish Accessible Information Forum for producing accessible printed information, to suit the needs of disabled people, including a standard font size of Point 12.

Listening to you

In designing these new mandates we have taken into account your feedback and comments which, we hope you will agree, make the completion of these online mandate forms much quicker and easier for you. We will continue to welcome any suggestions you might have and we have provided details below of the people you should contact if you have any suggestions or queries.

Which forms have been changed?

  • AA LAO CIV –Civil and Children’s (1995 Act only) Advice and Assistance Online Applicant’s Mandate
  • CIV/LAO – Civil Legal Aid Online Applicant’s Mandate
  • CIVTR/LAO – Civil Legal Aid – Online Transfer of Legal Aid Mandate
  • AA/LAO/CHLA – Children’s (2011 Act) Advice and Assistance Online Applicant’s  Mandate
  • CHLA/LAO  2011 Act – Children’s Legal Aid Online Applicant’s Mandate
  • AA/LAO/CRIM – Criminal A & A /ABWOR Online Applicant’s Mandate
  • LAO/CRIM – Summary Criminal Legal Aid Online  Applicant’s Mandate
  • LAO/SOL – Solemn Criminal Legal Aid Online Applicant’s Mandate
  • LAO/CRIMTR – Criminal Legal Aid Online Transfer of Legal Aid Mandate
  • LAO/APP – Criminal Legal Aid Appeal

If you have any queries about this update or about use of the mandates please contact:

Civil & Children’s Legal Assistance – Mrs A Forbes-Partington Assistant Manager, Direct Dial: 0131 240 2072, or by email:
Criminal Legal Assistance: Mrs A Craig, Criminal Applications Team Leader, Direct Dial: 0131 240 2098 or by Email:

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