Report (5th Day)

Part of Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Bill – in the House of Lords at 4:30 pm on 20th March 2012.

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Photo of Lord McNally Lord McNally Deputy Leader of the House of Lords, The Minister of State, Ministry of Justice, Liberal Democrat Leader in the House of Lords 4:30 pm, 20th March 2012

My Lords, I will explain. The original amendment by the noble Lord, Lord Pannick, did not cut the muster as legal statute. As the noble Lord knows, I have qualifications in this area, so I tweaked it a little, on the basis of my knowledge of part 1 of the relevant material on English legal institutions, to make it fit for purpose. I was glad to do so.

I am also glad to associate myself with the intervention of my noble friend Lord Phillips, who is on a roll today. I commend LawWorks and its encouragement of pro bono work on the part of solicitors, the Access to Justice Foundation and the work of the noble and learned Lord, Lord Goldsmith, in this area. We hope that it will increase the stream of funding available for pro bono work. I have great pleasure in saying that the Government accept this amendment.