Information for lawyers

Claimable thresholds increase

We have been working with our technology team to increase claim thresholds. These changes were approved in August and should see a reduction in the amount of matters being held up in the ATLAS work pool. The changes include auto-approval of the following before Victoria Legal Aid will need to make an assessment:

  • 2 x bail grants (each bail grant still needs to be requested)
  • 5 x plea days following trial
  • 8 x County Court mentions/call-overs.

Auto-certification of:

Revised Director of Public Prosecutions Policy available now

All the previous policy documents have now been retired and replaced by the single Policy of the Director of Public Prosecutions for Victoria.

This Director of Public Prosecutions Policy document is ‘living’ and it is recommended that you do not print copies. To read the policy in full, see the Office of Public Prosecutions Victoria website.

More information

For more information, see the Director of Public Prosecutions website.

Reminder about equitable charges

A signed legal aid application form assists in supporting good practice.

Signed aid application forms also provide the opportunity for you to advise your client about the standard conditions of a grant and any special conditions which may be imposed for that client, such as a contribution or equitable charge.

If you have an equitable charge condition imposed relating to your client’s grant of assistance, we need:

VLA welcomes new criminal trial preferred barristers

In early 2017, we welcomed five barristers to our criminal trial preferred barrister list. The list was established in July 2015 and includes members of the Victorian Bar and public defenders from VLA Chambers. Only barristers on the list can be briefed in legally aided criminal trials, unless an exception is granted in advance. There are currently 257 members.

Our new members include:

Further response to the practising certificate fees review

We responded to the Victoria Legal Services Board and Commissioner’s (LSBC) review of practising certificate fees in April 2017.

We share the view of many in the profession that regulatory costs should be kept to an efficient minimum. We think it is important to strike a balance between proper regulation, and the effect of regulatory cost on the profession and consumers.

Indictable crime quality audits commencing in October

We are supporting the delivery of high-quality legal services through quality audits. During October, the Quality Audits team will be working with indictable crime panel practitioners.

The Quality Audits team will use this connection with practitioners to recognise high-quality work conducted by our panel members. Quality audits also assist practitioners in meeting our Practice Standards through training and legal education.

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