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Crime legal aid firms are forced to offer cheap ‘McJustice’ to clients, says strike leader

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Head of London Criminal Courts Solicitors Association also has a pop at legal education establishment

mcjustice-lead

Crime law solicitors’ firms have been forced into a “McJustice approach” of providing a fast-food-like service on the cheap, one of the leaders of current legal aid strike said in a frank interview published earlier this week.

Barrister-turned-solicitor-advocate Jon Black also lambasted what he described as profit-motivated law schools for creating a flood of students, who are bound to be disappointed by the current state of the employment market.

Black — the president of London Criminal Court’s Solicitor Association — told legal affairs blog LegalHackette’s Brief yesterday that too many criminal legal aid firms cut corners by “piling clients high and selling them cheap”.

But ultimately, according to Black, the market will regulate the system without the need for the government’s proposed dual-contracting system. That regime would force a reduction in the number of legal aid-authorised providers by about two-thirds.

Black explained:

There are firms that have gone on for years about the market being too big. There were people in them who trained us how to bill so we could recruit more lawyers, who are now saying there is an over-supply.

The founding partner of King’s Cross firm BSB Solicitors also fired a broadside at the legal education establishment for money-grubbing.

A former Leeds Grammar School boy, who studied English and history at Newcastle Poly before completing the bar course at the Inns of Court School of Law, Black blames deregulation of the universities in the 1990s and the post-graduate legal education system for creating a perfect storm. He told the website:

Law faculties popped up everywhere and the profit-driven provision of education meant over-recruitment at universities. That has been coupled with irresponsible recruitment to the Bar Professional Training Course and Legal Practice Course without warning students that there is no guarantee they will be the next Michael Mansfield or Helena Kennedy.

15 Comments

Anonymous

Defamation lawyers will be licking their lips at the prospect of more innuendo from Mr Black about the quality of the McDonalds service.

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Anonymous

Well hang on, let’s not be so hasty, they might simply be licking their lips at the sight of a Big Mac.

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Anonymous

‘the legal education establishment for money-grubbing’
A wonderful Freudian slip / typo.

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Anonymous

Why doesn’t Mickey D’s just offer legal services –
‘Do you want fries with that?’

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Moron Moran

I got a very competent from a Mcjustice Bar School. I have courage and won’t be holed in my Hull. It’s amazing to be the best lawyer in the North East. I’ve been told I am great. I’m a barrister and who are you all. I call you all out.

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rocco

I have dual status;criminal solicitor with a 25metre swimming proficiency badge. And McFeckin Gove et al will not deter me from aiming for the next Bar…. cycling proficiency and I don’t Gove A Damn! 🙂

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Pie Man Cumbersome QC

If the seagulls feed when the sun goes down and when the sun breaks they survey, then surely it is still a survey and not a Shallot? Is it not?….

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Éric Daniel Pierre Cantona

Ah, but if the shallots grow as the eagle flies then surely this is the turd of a male cow? Is it not?

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Techfool

Is this a trademark infringement

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Behold the truth

Maybe that’s all the country can afford

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retiredbrief

Black is right of course. Any intelligent person can analyse the situation, but it does not solve any problems.
There is a massive oversupply in the legal aid sector, meaning that even when oldies like me retire there is no recruitment problem. Meaning also that the MOJ can mistreat the sector mercilessly and without adverse consequence.
The present strike will implode shortly. Firms will have inflicted damage on themselves for no significant gain. You cannot beat the government. Not if you depend on legal aid.

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Anonymous

Retired
You lucky ********

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Mr Pineapples

Of course the strike will have an effect – some mug is going to contact Mr Gove and say – “what is going on? Sort it out”

It’s all about pressure.

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Anonymous

Strike action has sure worked for the bar in the past.

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Anonymous

The Government is serious in it’s intent.
In the same way it fronted out the miners and smashed them.
It intends to do the same here.
It will use any adverse consequences of the strike (a strike which does damage the strikers most) against the lawyers and then when weakened the death blow will be delivered.
All very sad – but this is what we are up against.
We are not wanted.

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