The government released the official legal aid statistic on 13 December 2018, brining the data set up to date to 30 September 2018.
Worryingly, crime expenditure and workload have both decreased. Fewer civil legal help matters have been started, continuing the trend since the Legal Aid Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (LASPO). Mediation cases have reduced and are still under half the number of cases pre-LASPO.
There have been two important increases in applications – in domestic violence cases, where the evidence changes have been brought in, and in exceptional case funding, although these remain well below the expected levels touted by government as necessary for the scheme to be an effective safety net.