The Independent has reported that Justice Secretary and Lord Chancellor Chris Grayling was told by a judge on Friday last week, that he issued “materially misleading and inaccurate” guidance on rights to legal aid at inquests.
The article notes that this is the latest in a series of legal challenges to controversial provisions in the Legal Aid, Punishment and Sentencing of Offenders Act 2012. The article also notes that the judgement was a victory for Joanne Letts, who was initially denied legal aid for representation at the inquest of the death of her mentally ill brother Christopher Letts.
Ms Letts challenged the legality of the hurdles that now have to be overcome to be represented at inquests, with reference to Article 2 (protection of life) of the European Convention on Human Rights. The government is also cutting the legal aid budget by £220m per year up to 2018.