Justice Minister Simon Hughes has promised a government announcement on litigants in person within the next few weeks.
Speaking at the Liberal Democrat party conference this week, Hughes said he had pushed for a government solution to the increasing numbers of lawyerless litigants who have appeared in civil courtrooms since the abolition of legal aid.
The 63 year-old MP for Bermondsey and Old Southwark also suggested that an easier method of applying for exceptional funding would be introduced before the next general election, The Law Society Gazette reports.
Hughes hinted at a renewed emphasis on mediation, saying
“I am hoping you will hear encouraging announcements in the very near future to address the question of how to support litigants in person and support people without needing to give them lawyers. I am conscious how difficult it is. My wish would be, irrespective, is that everybody before they come to court has the opportunity to talk through with people exactly what the issues are.”
But no funds will be made available for the restoration of legal aid, the Liberal Democrats have already stated.
Image by Chris Potter via Flickr under a Creative Commons licence