The role of an independent children's lawyer
Before you make a complaint about an independent children's lawyer (ICL) it is important to understand their role and consider what you want to achieve by making a complaint. You might be better off putting your concerns directly to the court.
The court appoints an ICL. Victoria Legal Aid will then choose an independent children's lawyer and decides about the grant of legal aid. Lawyers acting as ICLs under a grant of legal aid are required to comply with .
Read our fact sheet:
Types of complaints against an independent children's lawyer
Victoria Legal Aid can investigate a complaint about an ICL’s compliance with our . It is unlikely that Victoria Legal Aid will take any action if your complaint is simply that you disagree with the views of the ICL, or that you think the ICL should have exercised their professional judgement differently. The way in which the ICL acts may not always meet with the approval of the parties or the child but this does not mean that the ICL has failed in their professional responsibilities.
If you disagree with the recommendations of the independent children's lawyer
The ICL’s recommendations are part of the evidence that the court will consider when making a decision in your case. If you disagree with the conclusions or recommendations of your ICL, you should make your own submissions and provide your own evidence to the court, as part of your preparation for your case. You should speak to your lawyer about this.
If you want an independent children's lawyer removed from your case
You can make an application to the court for the ICL's removal. You should speak to your lawyer about this (if you have one).
If you are a child and you are not happy with your lawyer
If you are a parent and you think an independent children's lawyer’s conduct breaches their professional obligations or our practice standards
Please contact us using . Alternatively, you may make a complaint about the lawyer directly to the The Legal Services Board and Commissioner regulates the legal profession and enforces the Australian Solicitors’ Conduct Rules 2015 and other professional standards.
Disclaimer: The material in this print-out relates to the law as it applies in the state of Victoria. It is intended as a general guide only. Readers should not act on the basis of any material in this print-out without getting legal advice about their own particular situations. Victoria Legal Aid disclaims any liability howsoever caused to any person in respect of any action taken in reliance on the contents of the publication.
We help Victorians with their legal problems and represent those who need it most. Find legal answers, chat with us online, or call us. You can speak to us in English or ask for an interpreter. You can also find more legal information at www.legalaid.vic.gov.au
Reviewed 02 September 2022