Belgialaiset asianajajat protestoivat perustuslain vastaiseksi katsomansa oikeusapu-uudistuksen johdosta

7.2.2018 | Oikeusuutiset

Markku Fredman

50 euron maksu myös varattomille. Asianajajilla ei mitään varmuutta palkkiosta ja sen suuruudesta.

Fair Trials International:

Belgian lawyers are protesting this Wednesday 7th February against the 2016 reform of the national legal aid system, which they say makes it more difficult for people to obtain free legal assistance.

The reform
introduced an administrative fee starting at 50€ (20€ for the
designation of the legal aid lawyer and 30€ for the first procedure) for
any individual requesting legal aid, including those who qualify for
state-provided legal assistance. The fee increases by 30€ for any appeal

theory, one could ask to be exempted from this fee” said Doutrepont
“but in practice the procedure is cumbersome and lengthy”.

2016 bill also modified the criteria for granting legal aid, making it
more difficult to prove one’s own needs and justify their own
conditions. For instance, “a homeless person who is being hosted by a
friend” said Doutrepont “will need to prove that this arrangement is
only temporary and does not have an impact on their resources”.

for the work of legal aid lawyers is also problematic. According to the
claimants, legal aid lawyers have no information nor assurance as to
the amount of the remuneration they would be able to claim for work they
have been doing since the entry into force of the reform, i.e.
September 1, 2016. In the absence of a clear framework and of an
adequate compensation, many lawyers decide not to take up legal aid
cases anymore.

According to official reports, beneficiaries of legal aid have decreased by 30%
across Belgium since the entry into force of the 2016 bill. The
claimants interpret this data as evidence of the harsh limits imposed on
the granting of legal aid.

Belgian lawyers challenge constitutionality of legal aid reform

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