I have a problem re the possible re-opening of an overpayment appeal which was closed due to the clt's fraud case. Clt is no longer subject to criminal action and has asked that we reopen his LSC case. Can we/should we do this? I don't know where to look in the LSC regs. Case was closed in March 2010 and has been paid for under the contract.
You could reopen this case as a new case potentially on the grounds that you have not 'provided legal help to a client who has already received it on the same matter within the last 6 months.' or as the old case reopened.
But the grounds on which you closed could be the cases undoing. It is not clear under which end point the original matter was closed. The fact that a fraud case in on going is not a reason to close it. Could it have been kept open with requests for adjournments on appeals that are taking well over 6 months even longer at the moment..
If the client was so 'careful'about not pursuing the appeal for very good reasons, what's changed in the appeal arguments? Other than a failed fraud court case could strengthen the arguments under appeal in general.
You would also have to provide very good reasons for such a late appeal to the DWP. More problems if the appeal withdrawn?
If you open a new matter start you could have to explain should it have been closed?
You have to ask yourself Why it was shut in the first place? Secondly has it significant benefit? But perhaps more importantly why should you reopen it old or new?
Personally I would reopen the original case at best but I would need that client to convince me to do that on the basis it was they who previously seem to have instructed the appeal to be withdrawn.
Post by nickd (Mylegal) on Nov 24, 2010 20:38:52 GMT
It's slightly off topic, but relevant to the issue. If you come across a fraud related overpayment case again, have a look at section 117 SSAA 92. This section makes provision for a Court considering charges brought under either section 111 or 112 (predominantly used as charges by DWP/LA prosecutors) for the case to be adjourned pending the outcome of the appeal considering any question on the overpayment. You should make the client's criminal lawyer aware of this (they are often not aware) as they will be able to plead an adjournment. I don't follow why you had to close the case because there was a fraud investigation? The WB provider deals with matters associated with the overpayment appeal whilst the criminal lawyer deals with all matters associated with the prosecution. Many criminal solicitors welcome the parallel involvement of a WB specialist as it enables the recover-ability and amount to be checked, as well as any underlying entitlement issues etc plus disputes over the nature/existence of the instructions issued to the claimant as to their duty to report .
Post by Patrick Torsney on Dec 20, 2010 14:07:07 GMT
sifty, the rules relating to clients that return with the same legal problem after an earlier case has closed can be found in the Standard Civil Contract Specification General Provisions, at 3.47 (it was 5.15 in the Unified Contract)
The rule is largely unchanged, although it now has the sections on where a client was helped by another supplier previously tagged on
It's important to remember that the periods which must have passed before you can open a NMS for the same legal problem apply from the date the case was reported, not closed