Life Without Legal Aid

This is well worth a read in full, by Join Robins at New Law Journal

She (Lady Hale) quoted the academic Dr EJ Cohn who published a comparative study of legal aid in the Law Quarterly Review in 1943.

Legal aid was a service that a modern state owed to its citizens “as a matter of principle”, Cohn argued; just as the modern state tried to protect “the poorer classes against the common dangers of life, such as unemployment, disease, old age, social oppression, etc, so it should protect them when legal difficulties arise”. It was argued that the case for such legal protection was, in fact, stronger than other protections. “The state is not responsible for the outbreak of epidemics, for old age or economic crises,” Cohn said. “But the State is responsible for the law.”

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