Lib Dem MPs have this week broken ranks with the coalition government by tabling amendments to the legal aid bill in an attempt to ensure that claimants involved in appeals continue to be eligible for help.

The coalition intends to end all legal aid for welfare benefits, a move that would result in may welfare rights workers in advice agencies losing their funding and agencies no longer being able to offer specialist support to claimants.

However, Lib Dem MP Tom Brake has tabled an amendment to the bill which would retain legal aid for claimants involved in reviews and appeals against DWP decisions. The move has the backing of a number of other Lib Dem MPs as well as the labour party. It is also being supported by a group of 23 charities including Citizens Advice, MIND, Mencap, Scope and RNIB.

You can read more about the move on the BBC website and download a briefing paper on the amendment produced by the Justice for All campaign.


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