DESPITE there being maximum waiting times of up to 12 weeks for civil legal aid, there is apparently no waiting period for legal aid in Dundalk.
That’s according to figures released by Minister for Justice Alan Shatter who was answering questions in the Dail this week.
According to Shatter there is no maximum waiting period for legal aid in Dundalk, despite the fact that waiting times have increased since the downturn in the economy and that there has been a very significant increase in demand for the Board’s services.
The figure came in his response to Deputy Willie O’Dea who asked the Minister what were “the current delays in accessing civil legal aid on a county basis.”
According to Shatter Dundalk is the only centre in the Ireland not to have delays, or at least no maximum waiting period for civil legal aid.
In Clondalkin you have to wait a considerable 12 weeks, while in Blanchardstown seven is the maximum, while across Dublin delays varied between six and 12 weeks.
Delays outside the capital were slightly less with delays of six weeks in Longford, nine in Newbridge and six in Navan.
In neighbouring Monaghan the delays were just two weeks.
“ The Board’s (Legal Aid Board’s law centres) grant-in-aid for 2012 in respect of general civil matters, which accounts for the vast majority of its funding, has effectively been maintained at its 2011 level. I have also now incorporated the grant for asylum services into the grant-in-aid which should give the Board greater flexibility in using its resources. A number of other measures have also either already been put in place or are in the process of being put in place and I believe that these will have a positive impact for persons seeking services from the Board. Specific details are as follows: