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Society: Lobby your MP over Court Closures

The Law Society is urging solicitors to lobby their MPs over the government’s plans to close 91 courts and tribunals across England and Wales.

Last month justice minister Shailesh Vara announced the government was consulting on the shutting of nearly one-fifth of the courts estate. He also announced the further integration of 31 courts and tribunals in England and Wales.

The Society said it was ‘important that decision-makers in Westminster and Whitehall are aware of the impact of the closures and integration of courts in their constituencies.

‘We urge you to write to your local MP to highlight the proposals and the practical impact that these proposals will have on the ground’.

The Society has produced a ‘campaigner pack’ which includes a ‘suggested letter’ to ‘help provide a framework for you to set out the primary concerns you would like to raise’ about the Ministry of Justice’s proposals.

‘It can also be used to request a meeting with your MP to explain your concerns in more detail,’ the Society said.

Earlier this month Chancery Lane published an online map showing the percentage of citizens able to reach court within an hour using public transport.

A spokesperson for the Society said: ‘With 91 court closures on the cards, there are many different local stories to tell. Some closures would have a significant impact on solicitors and their clients, and it’s important that local MPs are aware of what could happen in their constituency.’

The consultation will close on 8 October.

[Courtesy: The Law Society Gazette]