Coalition close to agreeing sweeping legal reform
THE Government appears close to agreeing the biggest changes to the legal system in the history of the State.
As talks on the revised Legal Services Bill continued last night, sources said there was every chance the text will go for Cabinet approval later today.
The plan agreed with the troika, and later driven forward by Justice Minister Alan Shatter, aims to cut the cost of the courts system and reduce lawyers' fees.
It includes plans for 'one-stop-shop' practices , where barristers and solicitors operate in the same firm, and also provides for an independent legal regulator.
The bill was first published in November 2011 but after completing second stage it went back to Cabinet for considerable amendment. It has remained stalled ever since, with periodic assurances from Government that it was being dealt with and increasingly shrill criticisms from the opposition regarding delays.