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Being held in prison does not stop you getting legal support. In fact, it often calls for it. Complicated rules and procedures apply to prisoners, whether they are held on remand or following conviction.

Hegarty Solicitors hold a prison law contract and can represent and assist prisoners with a variety of different areas within Prison Law. There is means tested Legal Aid available in most of the below cases.

Please read more information below about the different areas of Prison Law that our experienced Prison Law solicitor can help with:

Recalls

If a prisoner is said to be in breach of the terms of their parole licence then the prisoner may be recalled to prison. We can help challenge these allegations of breach of licence. This is a very complicated area of prison law and so we would strongly recommend that prisoners accused of a breach seek our expert assistance.

Adjudications

We can support prisoners in instances of alleged breach of prison laws. We can represent prisoners in proceedings which take place before an independent adjudicator. Funding is not usually available for proceedings before a Governor; however we can provide advice and in some cases funding may be granted, so it is always worth asking the question.

Parole Board Hearings

We can help prisoners with all matters before the Parole Board. In appropriate cases, we can make written representations to the Parole Board for release and offer expert representation at an oral hearing should an initial request for release be refused.

Pre-Tariff Reviews

A ‘lifer’ or prisoner who is subject to an indeterminate sentence will be subject to a review before the tariff expiry date. This review is in document form and is prepared by the Prison and Probation Service. Once the prisoner has been provided with this dossier they should contact us immediately, as in most circumstances we can request a hearing to determine whether the prisoner is suitable for release.

Categorisation disputes for Category A prisoners

Prisons fall into different categories depending on the crime and perceived threat to the public. These categories have practical implications for the prisoner’s day to day living arrangements including the level of freedom and geographical location; this can make it easier or harder for family and friends to visit. A prisoner who identifies as a category A prisoner may require representation to argue the case for re-categorisation if they are not happy with the result of the initial assessment and/or subsequent reviews.

Sentence calculations

Prisoners who suspect or believe that their sentence has been incorrectly calculated must use the Prison’s internal complaint’s system to try and resolve the issue in the first instance. However, if this route has been exhausted and the matter has not yet been addressed, we can offer support and assistance with ensuring that the sentence has been correctly calculated and make representations if it has not.

Sentence planning

We can help with rehabilitative courses by requesting places on courses; jobs etc. If there are no places available we can help by seeking alternatives or, in special circumstances, requesting transfers to enable the rehabilitative programme to be followed. This is important for personal development and also shows you can integrate – this may be advantageous for future Parole Board reviews and assist upon release.

Home Detention Curfew (HDC)

If a prisoner is not automatically eligible for a Home Detention Curfew but has special circumstances we would strongly suggest they apply. Contact us and we can advise if the prisoner has a strong argument and can pursue a case for this on their behalf.

Family & Friends

If you have a friend or member of the family who is in prison and you suspect is in need of legal advice then please contact us. We also represent families following a prisoner’s death in custody.

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