HC Deb 14 July 1972 vol 840 cc462-3W
Mr. Havers

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what consideration has been given to the granting of legal aid to applicants to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Carlisle

The scheme, which is experimental and non-statutory, provides that initial applications should be prepared with the assistance of the board's staff and that, in cases where there is a hearing because the applicant is dissatisfied with the board's original decision, proceedings should be conducted informally and in private. The view taken from the outset of the scheme has been that, though it should be open to an applicant to bring a friend or legal adviser to assist him in putting his case, the cost of legal representation should not be met from public funds.