Figures published today by the Ministry of Justice show that from July to September both parties were represented in 24% of private law cases.
During the same period in 2012 – before the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act came into force in April 2013 – the proportion was 47%.
There are now more cases where both parties are unrepresented, with that proportion standing at 28%. Pre-LASPO the figure was around 15%.
In 39% of cases, just the applicant was represented (up from 32% in the same period in 2012), while the proportion of cases where just the defendant was represented remained at around 9%.
The MoJ report states that in general, cases where both parties or just the respondent had legal representation took longer than cases where both parties or just the applicant had no legal adviser.
Divorce cases, including financial remedy, where both parties were represented took on average 27 weeks to conclude. Where both parties had no solicitor or legal adviser cases were finished in 20 weeks.
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