§ Baroness Hamwee
asked Her Majesty's Government:
Whether they consider that, given the exclusion from allowances (for the purposes of calculating disposable income in assessing eligibility for legal aid) of the costs of heat, light and water, the allowances are "comprehensive" as described by the Lord Chancellor on 3rd February 1993 (col. 305).
§ The Lord Chancellor (Lord Mackay of Clashfern)
The allowances which can be set against income in determining disposable income for the purposes of civil legal aid are set out in Schedule 2 to the Civil Legal Aid (Assessment of Resources) Regulations 1989. They are wide ranging and I believe the description "comprehensive" to be justified. Water charges are in fact allowed against income (paragraph 9(2)(b) of schedule 2). Heat and light are treated as being covered by the free limit.