Burton Copeland will not participate in the day of action on 7th March 2014
Burton Copeland will NOT be participating in the day of action. The cuts are driven by political imperative and proceed because the public are not particularly “on side”. We will not achieve public sympathy by not doing our job. In order to fight effectively we believe disruption, which is the aim of this day of action, should be achieved by doing our job, to the letter, complying with our duties to the court and clients. This can be achieved in the following ways, which Burton Copeland will adopt. The system functions only because of our goodwill. That goodwill is to be withdrawn on 20th March. We will support the bar’s “no returns” policy. We will not deploy HCA’s to fill the gaps and will not take exception when implementation of that policy causes us problems. We are tired of being criticised by judges who tell us we should actively chase CPS, when they fail to comply with CPR or directions given. For each case, in which CPS are overdue, there will be separate emails to the court and CPS. If there is no acknowledgement further reminder emails will be sent that day. Reminders will continue to be sent for each day of non compliance. If everyone pursues this policy, the results are obvious. We will insist on receipt of unused schedules 14 days prior to trial. In the event of failure, we will insist on an adjournment of the trial. We will not assist the court in cases in which there has been a delay in granting legal aid. In complex cases we will be informing the court that we cannot advance defence preparation until legal aid is granted. We will not deal with cases “on the hoof” due to late service by CPS. We will support any advocate who is unable to deal with late court sittings due to child care issues and thus has to abandon proceedings for the day. We believe the cumulative effect of these measures will be much greater than closing the courts for a morning. Further, Grayling can hardly complain when we are simply complying with the rules. Withdrawal of goodwill is more effective than withdrawal of services.
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