International Law in Brief
IBA and World Bank Report Links Legal Aid to Economic Growth
By: Justine N. Stefanelli | October 2, 2019 - 10:36am
On October 1, 2019, the International Bar Association (IBA) and the World Bank published a joint report titled, “A Tool for Justice: A Cost in Benefit Analysis of Legal Aid”. According to a press release from the IBA, the report surveyed over 50 cost benefit studies on legal aid programs worldwide, across both civil and common law jurisdictions, including the U.S., Bangladesh, and South Africa. The report concludes that “improving legal aid services is as important for economic growth as providing functioning hospitals, schools and roads.” It goes on to explain that, “[t]he cost of problems left unresolved by a lack of legal aid do not disappear - they simply shift to other areas of government spending such as healthcare, housing, child protection and imprisonment.” The report was formally launched last week at the IBA Annual Conference in Seoul. A video of the session will be available on the IBA website soon.