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Criminal Legal Aid

Legal aid is a source of Government funding available to people who otherwise would not be able to afford legal advice or a solicitor to represent them in court.

LEGAL AID – MAGISTRATES COURTTo receive legal aid, an applicant must pass two tests:

  • The Interests of Justice Test – This determines whether an applicant is eligible for legal aid based on the merits of their case.
  • The Means Test – This test establishes whether an applicant is financially eligible for legal aid, considering income and expenses. Capital is not included.

If you or your partner are in receipt of Income Support, Employment and Support Allowance, income based Jobseekers Allowance or Guarantee State Pension Credit, you will automatically pass the means test.

We will advise you whether you are eligible for legal aid and assist you in completing and submitting the relevant application forms, together with supporting documents to the Magistrates Court.

LEGAL AID – CROWN COURT

In relation to matters that are dealt with before a Crown Court, all applicants with a gross household income of less than £37500 will automatically be entitled to the grant of legal aid. A contribution towards the costs of legal aid may be ordered from income, depending upon the outcome of a means test.

The Crown Court will require you to complete a form regarding your income and resources and that form will need to be submitted to the Crown Court on your behalf as soon as possible. It is important that you provide this information since failure to do so may result in an order being made by a Judge that the full costs of your defence are to be paid by you if you are found ‘guilty’.

It is important that you tell the Court Office if your financial circumstances change during the case. You can ask for an estimate of your costs at any time but should remember that this is a maximum that you may have to pay and the court may decide not to make any order at all. We would be happy to discuss all these matters with you if you have any queries.

We are obliged to advise you that at the end of the case and normally only in the event that you are found ‘guilty’, the Crown Court may make a Recovery of Defence Costs Order which requires you to pay a contribution towards the costs of your defence, including the costs of the earlier proceedings in the Magistrates Court.

Contact a specialist today

Martyn Prowel
Martyn Prowel
E-mail: mprowel@martynprowel.co.uk
Direct Line Telephone No. : 029 2047 5121
Martyn is a consultant and has over 40 years’ experience dealing with serious and complex criminal cases
Find out more about Martyn Prowel
Geraint Richards
Geraint Richards
E-mail: grichards@martynprowel.co.uk
Direct Line Telephone No. : 029 2047 5121
Geraint qualified as a solicitor in 1984. He has extensive experience as a crime specialist.
Find out more about Geraint Richards
James Lynch
James Lynch
E-mail: jlynch@martynprowel.co.uk
Direct Line Telephone No. : 029 2047 5126
James has nearly 20 years post-qualification experience and during that time has represented clients charged with murder, attempted murder, fraud, armed robbery, drug offences, blackmail and serious sexual offences which were before the Crown Court at Cardiff, Newport and Swansea.
Find out more about James Lynch
Aled Watkins
Aled Watkins
E-mail: awatkins@martynprowel.co.uk
Direct Line Telephone No. : 029 2047 5121
Aled Watkins qualified as a solicitor in 2000. Initially, he worked in general practice representing clients as an advocate in contested family proceedings, both in the County and Magistrates Court and also in care proceedings and adoption hearings.
Find out more about Aled Watkins
James Harris
James Harris
E-mail: jharris@martynprowel.co.uk
Direct Line Telephone No. : 029 2047 5121
James qualified as a solicitor in 2005. As a trainee solicitor James was in general practice, dealing with both criminal law and social welfare issues including welfare benefits advice, antisocial behaviour cases and benefit fraud.
Find out more about James Harris
kate lingley 4
Kate Lingley
E-mail: klingley@martynprowel.co.uk
Direct Line Telephone No. : 029 2047 5121
Kate represents clients accused of all criminal offences in the Police Station, Youth Court, Magistrates Court, Crown Court and Appeal Courts.
Find out more about Kate Lingley
Michelle Spencer
Michelle Spencer
E-mail: mspencer@martynprowel.co.uk
Direct Line Telephone No. : 029 2047 5121
Michelle is a member of the Institute of Legal Executives with some 8 years experience of criminal defence work.
Find out more about Michelle Spencer
Peter Stone
Peter Stone
E-mail: pstone@martynprowel.co.uk
Direct Line Telephone No. : 029 2047 5100
Peter has been a member of Martyn Prowel Solicitors Crime and Motoring Department since 2002 and in that time has provided legal advice and assistance to clients attending at Police Stations for interview.
Find out more about Peter Stone

Why our clients like dealing with us

"I was prepared to give up but you were not. Thank you"
Mrs C of Llandaff
"Everything was dealt with instantly. This was a good friendly service, I'd certainly recommend you to someone in need."
Mr and Mrs L of Penarth
"The advice I received was clear, concise, and delivered without delay. You helped me out of a difficult situation, thank you."
Mr R of Aberdare
"You kept me informed on how my case was going and I would definitely recommend you to anyone. Please keep up the good work."
Miss J of Roath
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Martyn Prowel Solicitors, The Aspect, 140 Queen Street, Cardiff, CF10 2GL
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Martyn Prowel Solicitors is a trading name of Martyn Prowel Limited, VAT Reg No: 667233619. Registered in England and Wales company number 04314424. Martyn Prowel Limited is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) (Organisation Number 596508). We use the word ‘partner’ to refer to a Director of the Limited Company, or an employee or consultant with equivalent standing and qualifications. A List of Directors of Martyn Prowel Limited is available for inspection at the Registered Office at Martyn Prowel Solicitors The Aspect 140 Queen Street Cardiff CF10 2GL SRA.ORG.UK Code of Conduct