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Legal Aid

Legal Aid is still available for family mediation in ALL cases in provided there is a la significant legal dispute and for eligible clients who go on to participate in mediation they are then able to access free advice from a solicitor under a scheme called Help With Mediation. In cases where one party establishes their eligibility for legal aid, the Legal Aid Agency will also pay for the other party to attend an assessment meeting (MIAM) and also for their first starter mediation meeting.

We appreciate that knowing whether you qualify for legal aid is important. In order to receive Legal Aid in mediation you must be financially eligible and you must provide the documentary evidence to confirm this. Without this evidence we are unable to provide the Assessment Meeting free of charge.

Legal Aid assessments look at income and capital and we have to apply the rules set down by Government and the Legal Aid Agency.  The Legal Aid Checker on the Direct Gov website will help you work out if you qualify:

To access this checker - click the Start button then select Family and then Family Mediation.  You will then need to select Yes you have already started mediation (even if you have not) then click on the green Check if qualify financially button.

The rules regarding a calculation are complicated and supporting documents are needed.  The service has no discretion. Please look at our Legal Aid Guidance sheet  – see the Download section on our website. If you work through this it will tell you what you need to bring to your assessment meeting.

To help you we are now offering the following:

1. We offer Drop in sessionsPlease check the exact dates below.  No charge is made for the legal aid assessment whether you ultimately qualify for legal aid or not. Please note that the drop in runs on a first come first served basis and you may have to wait. If you do not qualify for legal aid we will only be able to provide a Mediation Information and Assessment meeting (MIAM) if you are then willing to pay. If you potentially qualify for legal aid but have not got the correct evidence, you will be told what you need to bring another day.

Please note we cannot guarantee the other party in your case will not attend the same session. 

Although it is a drop in session, it would be helpful if you could ring in advance to let us know your are coming. There are limited waiting facilities so please be aware that if you do bring another person with you that they may need to arrange to meet you later.

2. If you wish to be assessed for legal aid and cannot attend the Drop in session, you can always book an appointment on the basis that you will be assessed for eligibility anyway but if you do not qualify for legal aid or do not have the correct evidence you will have to pay for the meeting.

Our drop ins will take place at our office:

St George's House, 6 St George's Way, Leicester, LE1 1QZ

Drop in Sessions for February 2020

Monday 10th – 10.00 am until 12 noon

Monday 24th – 9.30 am until 11.30 am