Reinstated solicitor rejects LAB overtures

Hilda Amoo-Gottfried, the London solicitor judicially reviewing Legal Aid Board area committee moves to deselect her from a duty solicitor scheme, is pressing on with her action despite an LAB offer to pay her legal costs and settle, it is understood.

Amoo-Gottfried was reinstated by LAB chiefs several weeks ago after a judge gave her leave to apply for judicial review.

She was thought not only to be determined to have a judicial review but also to be considering action for damages.

The LAB then wrote to her offering to pay her legal costs to date if she would agree to drop all legal action.

The LAB's affidavit required by the court was four days overdue at the time The Lawyer went to press.

An LAB spokeswoman said: “Because proceedings are still live, I'm not able to confirm the position [on the affidavit]. The problem seems to have been with the local and regional committees.”

Amoo-Gottfried was deselected from her scheme by a local committee in April 1993. The LAB national committee issued a directive in April to reinstate her, but the local committee and London regional committee is thought not to have complied with it.

Amoo-Gottfried was unavailable for comment.

The LAB national duty solicitor committee is concerned with the overall running of the duty scheme. It includes a core of LAB board members appointed by the Lord Chancellor.