Double ECF

“JRS London Bus syndrome” strikes and the week begins with 2 Exceptional Case Funding matters, within an hour of each other. The first seemed to involve circumstances which would fairly obviously lead to the grant of ECF. I say “seemed” because on reading the letter of refusal on the second case, it seems unlikely to us that ECF will ever be granted.

The circumstances, which I cannot go into, are about as grim as they possibly could be. This will leave a client, about as vulnerable as one can possibly be, in reliance upon a litigation friend against a fully represented opponent.

If this was not bad enough the terms of the rejection suggest, about as strongly as is possible, that the LAA will never grant ECF for initial Legal Help.

There is some learning here for the first application which we are going to check for out clients this afternoon – that said I am now even less optimistic than I originally was. This leaves me with a pessimism rating which might just qualify for a Guinness record.

We are struggling to imagine what might give rise to “exceptionality” in this scheme which really represents no form of safety net whatsoever.

We have mentioned a few times that we are trying to keep a register of ECF decisions. If you have one to go alongside this please send it us.

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