Adjourned hearing fee

How many units do the LAA require before an adjournment fee can be claimed for an online MHT? This seems to have slipped my mind and I can’t find the info anywhere.

Hi Karen,

How do you mean? If you attend for an online hearing and it is adjourned you can claim the fee.

I think it is 3 units but I cannot find definitively

At least 3 UNITS.

It is 3 units - see this link

Legal Aid Agency, ‘Civil news: fee rules change for mental health remote hearings’ (16/7/20) - Mental Health Law Online

Correcting myself - 15 minutes to be precise!

It is not necessarily 3 units (or 15 minutes as the Contract says). Paragraph 9.85A applies from the category specific rules here:

Legal Aid Agency, ‘2018 Standard Civil Contract: Category Specific Rules: Mental Health (section 9)’ (7/8/20)

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Thank you all.
Deborah -surely the 16/7/20 rule change trumps the category specific rules?

LAA has amended the [Standard Civil Contract 2018]. The link I sent shows the “new rules”. It’s 15 mins.

Yes - Catherine - that’s what I understand to be the case.

They are the same thing - the 16/7/20 rule change referred to in the MHLO article is the amendment to the Category Specific Rules of the Contract that inserts paragraphs 19.85A and 19.85B - it sets out three possible separate circumstances in which an adjourned hearing fee is claimable for a remote hearing which are, in summary, 1 - if you have travelled to the client’s location to take part in the hearing, 2 - if you have incurred advocacy costs irrespective of duration OR 3 - if you have incurred non advocacy attendance costs of at least 15 minutes.
So if 1 or 2 apply you don’t need to worry about the 15 minutes duration, that would be relevant only if neither 1 or 2 apply and then you have to look at 3.

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Yes- Deborah that’s what I understood you to mean.

The summary at Legal Aid Agency, ‘Civil news: fee rules change for mental health remote hearings’ (16/7/20) wasn’t as clear as it should have been. It now reads:

Adjournment fee for remote hearing The LAA has amended the Standard Civil Contract 2018 to specify that the adjourned hearing fee may be claimed for remote hearings where: (1) the representative has incurred (a) some travel costs, (b) some advocacy costs, or (c) (if 15 minutes elapse between the actual/scheduled hearing start and the adjournment/postponement/cancellation) some non-advocacy attendance costs; and (2) the representative has taken reasonable steps to prevent any of these costs being incurred. The new rule will be applied retrospectively.