The SLCC has announced its plan to lay a reduced budget before Parliament next month. This will be accompanied by a 5% reduction in the general levy paid for all lawyers and a 20% reduction for all lawyers within their first three years of practice.
As well as considering the consultation responses received, the SLCC Board took into account key factors such as data and projections on complaint numbers, projected costs, business performance and efficiency gains and the organisation’s financial position, before reaching a decision on the budget and levy.
SLCC Chair, Jim Martin said, “Strong organisational performance and prudent financial management mean we are in a position to be able to agree a reduced budget and levies this year.
“The Board were delighted to be able to consider a reduction in the levy, and particularly to propose a greater reduction for lawyers early in their careers. This complements support provided by Scottish Government directed at addressing concerns about lawyers entering the legal services market at this time.
“The Board’s responsibility is to ensure the organisation has sufficient budget to carry out its statutory duties. Favourable external conditions, and the rapid response of management to then reduce resource in the business, mean we can adjust the budget whilst still providing the same quality of service and significantly improved complaints turnaround times of recent years.
“My thanks go to our staff for all their hard work to achieve this, and to those who provided constructive feedback on our plans.”
SLCC CEO, Neil Stevenson said, “Hard work to improve our performance and efficiency over the past few years has given us a strong platform to be able to consider a budget reduction this year.
“Our budget always remains in draft throughout the consultation period, but this year the changing external environment has been significant and we have had to rapidly amend our projections and plans as the consultation took place. We highlighted this approach in our consultation paper, published in January, noting the likelihood of changes to the budget proposal during the consultation period.
“We continue to refine our final budget, which will be laid before the Scottish Parliament next month, and to take into account some of the detailed comments made on our operating plan.”
More information on our 2021-22 budget consultation.