New guidance on submitting Children’s legal aid accounts - certificates and synopsis will no longer be issued in paper format

Monday, Oct 22, 2018

We will no longer automatically issue a paper copy of the children’s legal aid certificate and synopsis from Tuesday 23 October.

An online notification will be sent once the application has been granted. You can still request a copy of the certificate by submitting a request by way of an online message on the application.  

We have provided guidance below on how you can submit paperless accounts, use an online synopsis and the exceptions when you can still use the paper synopsis.

Why are we making these changes?

We are doing this because we believe that paper copies are no longer required and to reduce our carbon footprint. Please help us to reduce our carbon footprint by only requesting a printed copy if it is absolutely necessary.

How do I submit my paperless account?

Children's legal aid accounts should now be submitted through Legal Aid Online. We’ve detailed the exceptions to this below.

What are the benefits of submitting my account online?

  • Work items are easy to select and Legal Aid Online automatically calculates the fee due to the firm.
  • The online system automatically apportions court, travel and meeting times for you.
  • Fees and outlays can be claimed on the one page
  • You can easily navigate through the screens using your keyboard, in addition to your mouse
  • Legal Aid Online provides a streamlined process of negotiating. 

Can I still submit a paper account?

Yes, but you need to use an online synopsis if you still wish to submit a paper account.

Once you have created the online synopsis on Legal Aid Online you need to print the registration document and attach it to your paper accounts for submission.

What are the benefits of an online synopsis for paper accounts?

In comparison to the current process the new paper process will provide the following benefits to firms:

  • You will be sent a notification confirming that we have received your account and you can then track its progress.
  • There is a simplified process for submitting ‘Nil’ accounts that you can use through Legal Aid Online.

Are there any circumstances where I will not be able to use the LAOL system to submit a paperless online account or synopsis?

 There are some situations where you will not be able to submit your account using Legal Aid Online.  We will still be able to accept your account synopsis in paper format in these cases.

Examples of these situations are:

  • In cases where the grant of legal aid has been transferred and the first solicitor submitted a paper account.
  • When a previous claim was submitted using the old paper synopsis.

We would therefore encourage firms to familiarise themselves with the new online account process. Please see below for details of the support available.

Training and guidance

Further guidance on how to submit the online or paper account is available in our guidance section.

Please open this page and bookmark it so that you are able to access it easily whenever necessary. A link to the guidance section has also been added to the LAOL login screen.

WEBINARS are available for all new account products.

For further information or to arrange a webinar, please contact:
Christine Connerton, Digital Services Marketing Officer:




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