Law Society members debate no confidence in leadership following legal aid cuts

Law Society members are debating whether to pass a vote of no confidence in the body’s leadership today, after accusing it of not properly representing its members interests.

Parry Welch Lacey partner James Parry, who led the campaign for the motion, told assembled members that Law Society president Nick Fluck and chief executive Des Hudson had failed to act in the interests of their members in their dealings with the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) and secretary of state for justice Chris Grayling.

Parry accused leadership of agreeing to MoJ fee cuts that would harm its members in exchange for taking the controversial, and much opposed, proposal of Price Competitive Tendering off the table.

He said that Law Society members had stood by during the implementation of cuts in the past and added: “This cannot happen again.”

Parry said that it would mean the “destruction” of the legal aid system and of many firms if members failed to act.

In response, Hudson said: “We are confronted by a secretary of state for justice who is intent on cuts. Cuts at any price. We have never agreed to any cuts and we never will.”

He defended the Law Society’s principle of engagement with the government, saying that non-engagement would fail.

The debate is continuing.