Alexandra Cardenas discusses the Autumn statement and the government’s reversal of immigration and asylum fees.
This week, both Houses will continue their focus on the impact of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU. Secretary of state for exiting the EU, David Davis MP, will face scrutiny and a call for more detail on the UK’s Brexit strategy at exiting the EU oral questions on Thursday.
In relation to justice, the House of Commons will debate equality of access to justice in the criminal justice system. The Law Society will be briefing MPs ahead of the debate.
Last week saw the chancellor’s first fiscal announcement but there were few new announcements for the justice sector. The government reiterated their plans to reduce the number of whiplash claims and officially confirmed that they will no longer look to privatise the Land Registry. Within the statement, there was also confirmation of a Justice Bill although few specifics were given on what this would contain.
On Friday, the government announced plans to review the recently increased immigration and asylum fees. From today, all applicants will be charged fees at previous levels. Those who had paid the new fees will be reimbursed. The government will also bring forward secondary legislation to formalise these measures as soon as possible. In the meantime the changes will be effected through the use of the lord chancellor’s discretionary power to remit or reduce fees.
The Law Society’s director of public affairs, Robert Khan gave evidence to the Lords Constitution Committee on Wednesday on the legislative process, particularly focusing on pre-legislative scrutiny.