Following the collapse of the Immigration Advisory Service – the single biggest civil legal aid provider in any category of law – the LSC has revealed how it intends to manage the fall-out and re-allocate cases.
It is asking existing immigration providers in effect to bid for cases, and will allocate them according to bids. Each new case taken on will be a new matter start, and providers can request an increase in their allocation to allow them to take IAS cases. Expressions of interest, on the prescribed form, should be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org by midday on Monday 18th July, with cases being re-allocated next week. An FAQ is also available here (PDF).
The LSC has not said what it proposes to do if there are more cases than providers remaining in the market are able to take on, but given the size of IAS and its dominance in some geographical areas that must be a real risk. Hopefully there is a contingency plan.