To continue to access legal aid from 1 July 2019, you need to take the following steps:
Step 1 Create an nidirect account
Solicitors must create an nidirect account for identity assurance and then visit one of a number of locations to present identification. This is a NI Government requirement to ensure that your privacy is protected and your data secure.
Follow the instructions on the ni direct page 'Create or log in to a solicitor or barrister legal aid account'.
Practice staff must also create an nidirect account for identity assurance, but the process is different to that for solicitors. Go to www.nidirect.gov.uk/employee-legal-aid-account and enter the requested personal information. Once complete, you will receive an email asking you to activate your account.
For barristers, the Bar Library will assist your nidirect account creation.
Step 2 Create a digital account on LAMS
All solicitors wishing to undertake legal aid work from 1 July 2019 must create an individual ‘supplier account’. Make sure you have a validated nidirect account, and all the necessary information and documentation to hand. Go to www.nidirect.gov.uk/solicitor-or-barrister-legal-aid-account, enter the email address and password you used to create the account and ‘sign in’. Select ‘create supplier account’ and complete.
Each solicitor practice must designate one of its solicitors as its account administrator. This person must initially create his or her individual ‘supplier account’ and when this is approved, they must then create the practice’s ‘business account’ on LAMS. (Please note that you must await confirmation from the Agency that your individual supplier account has been approved before you can create the business account.) To create the business account, sign into your supplier account, select ‘business account’ and complete.
All practice staff who will access and input to LAMS must create an ‘other employee account’. Go to www.nidirect.gov.uk/employee-legal-aid-account, enter the email address and password you used to create the account and ‘sign in’ to your nidirect account. Select ‘create other employee account’ and complete.
All barristers wishing to undertake legal aid work after the introduction of LAMS must create an individual ‘supplier account’, followed by a ‘business account’. When your nidirect account is active, go to www.nidirect.gov.uk/solicitor-or-barrister-legal-aid-account, ‘sign in’, select ‘create supplier account’ and complete. Once your supplier account has been approved by the Agency, sign into your LAMS account via your nidirect account, select ‘create business account’ and complete.
For more information, you can:
- consult the step-by-step user manual
- refer to one of our leaflets
- consult our frequently asked questions
Step 3 Begin using LAMS
You will then be ready to start using LAMS.