03 November 2018

Less justice for British justice

Justice is badly treated

Many concerns about the state of the British justice system were ignored in the October 2018 Budget. But the Bar Council continues to actively question the link between austerity and legal aid cuts.

Justice resource planning

The October 2018 Budget clarified that the Treasury’s budget allocations to the departmental resource budget for the Ministry of Justice will shrink from £6.3bn in 2018/19 to £6bn in 2019/20.

The capital budget for the Ministry of Justice will also fall from £600m in 2018/19 to £400m in 2019/20. It will then fall to £100m in 2020/21. 

Justice in figures

The Bar Council has published analysis of government expenditure over the past decade. Economics professor Martin Chalkley, one of the architects of the original Crown court fee scheme for advocates, conducted this analysis.

Professor Chalkley’s research findings are based on his examination of government expenditure between 2008 and 2018. During this period expenditure grew by 13%, in real terms. During this same period ordinary funding for the Ministry of Justice fell by 27%, while Crown Prosecution Service funding fell by 34% and legal aid funding decreased by 32%.

Justice is badly treated

Bar Council chair Andrew Walker QC said this research highlighted 'just how badly justice has been treated in comparison with other areas of government expenditure'.