Axing legal aid for clinical negligence claims will cost the NHS an extra £28.5m a year, says report

BMJ 2012; 344 doi: (Published 13 January 2012) Cite this as: BMJ 2012;344:e380
  1. Clare Dyer
  1. 1BMJ

The UK government’s plans to scrap legal aid for clinical negligence claims in England and Wales will cost nearly three times as much as it saves and produce a net loss of £18m (€22m, $28m) a year, says an independent report from King’s College London.

The Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Bill, now in its committee stage in the House of Lords, will withdraw legal aid from a range of civil claims, including clinical negligence, in a bid to save £350m a year.

The government estimates that axing aid for clinical negligence claims would save the ministry of justice £10.5m a year. But the report, commissioned by the Law Society from …

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