Information for lawyers

A helping hand for Women’s Legal Service Victoria

In the spirit of collaboration and co-operation, Victoria Legal Aid has agreed to accommodate Women’s Legal Service Victoria (WLSV) in an exclusive area in its Queen Street office for approximately six weeks from 17 March.

Family, Youth and Children’s Law Director Nicole Rich said that it was pleasing to be able to help an important partner in delivering legal assistance services to the community.

‘It’s also a good opportunity to get to know WLSV colleagues a bit better,’ said Ms Rich.

Changes to reconsideration requests in ATLAS

Changes have been made to ATLAS to require practitioners to enter the extension number of the decision to be reconsidered.

This is because where Victoria Legal Aid provides one or multiple extensions of assistance, each extension is given a new number. If your client disagrees with a decision that Victoria Legal Aid has made and requests reconsideration, please ensure that you enter the extension number that corresponds to the decision to be reconsidered.

Practitioners reminded to correctly apply Victoria Legal Aid funding guidelines

Victoria Legal Aid’s compliance checks of summary crime grants is a timely reminder for practitioners to correctly apply funding guidelines and requirements, with recent checks revealing areas of non-compliance.

Between August and October 2013, we visited 53 firms (including four Victoria Legal Aid offices) and checked more than 700 files.

Final results for the checks show there were compliance issues in almost 11 per cent of grants of legal assistance for adult summary criminal matters.

The results indicate that practitioners are not always:

New Associate Director Access and Equity appointed

Annie Tinney has been appointed Associate Director Access and Equity while Dan Nicholson fills the post of Director Civil Justice, Access and Equity due to Kristen Hilton’s maternity leave.

Annie will be responsible for a wide breadth of projects comprising community legal education, client access, the community legal centres program, Victorian Legal Assistance Forum, as well as various outreach and regional planning projects.

Annie said she was looking forward to the role.

Reminder to apply the 'forum test' when applying for legal aid

Practitioners are reminded to ensure they only seek legal assistance for matters that are to be heard in Victorian courts.

The ‘reciprocity agreement’ signed by all Australian legal aid commissions provides that on any application for legal assistance, the ‘forum test’ will apply regardless of the state of residence of the applicant. The question of assistance is the sole responsibility of the commission in the state in which the proceedings are listed to be heard.


Subscribe to RSS - Information for lawyers