Court closures a threat to citizens, warns Law Society

The Law Society is warning that cuts to court services are now threatening the "very fabric of our justice system".

In the past six years, the Courts Service budget has been reduced by some 40%. The Law Society - which represents solicitors - says that's amounted to the closures of 77 local courts.

The society's director general Ken Murphy says that is no longer sustainable or justifiable, and access to justice for the vulnerable is not being considered by those implementing what he says is a “short-sighted and flawed" policy.

He's warned that the Courts Service is moving from the "low-hanging fruit" of rural areas to urban centres. Proposals are already in place to close Dun Laoghaire, Tallaght, Swords and Balbriggan - leaving just two court venues in the city.

The Courts Service itself says the proposed changes would cause some "inconvenience" - but insisted that it will result in improved services, facilities and support services.

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