SOLICITORS and barristers have gone on strike today in a row over changes to legal aid.

Disruption is expected at magistrates and crown courts today while lawyers protest against the proposed cuts.

Nick Dearing, from Donald Race and Newton, in Burnley, said: “This is not about fat cat lawyers.

“We do not expect to be rich, but we will not be able to continue to provide a decent service.

“The government is about to introduce a 17.5 per cent cut for doing legally aided work and that is on top of the effective reduction of fees.

“We are aware there is pressure on the public purse, but the reduction is so large that it will threaten the viability of firms.

“Particularly in deprived areas like parts of East Lancashire, people are vulnerable and we are concerned we will not be able to provide them with the necessary protection.”