Legal Aid: High Costs Events - 5 Day Rule

We have recently had clarification with the LAA as regards the interpretation of their ‘5 working day rule’ in relation to both under and over runs, as well as to main hearing days and the resulting effect on solicitor and Counsel fees. The guidance is as follows:

Under and over run event rates apply only to main hearing days and where the listing is revised by judicial direction within 5 working days (Saturdays, Sundays and Bank and Public Holidays are not included) before it takes place.

The implication of the above, is that in order to be paid a full event, the listing must be revised over 5 working days before it takes place. Indeed, this is the wording that is used when specifying when main hearing length counts as being increased, or not. This then would appear to rule out including the listing day or the event day in the 5 working days themselves. See below for a handy table for calculating this issue.

Example : Case listed for 6 Main Hearing days from Friday to Friday = 6 Event fees

Scenario 1: Evidence takes longer than expected and the Court considers an additional hearing day will be required.

An order is made for a listing of an additional Main Hearing day the next Monday.

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