Victoria Legal Aid

Update on proposed changes to our child protection guidelines

We are seeking additional feedback on our proposed changes to our funding guidelines which cover child protection matters.

Tuesday 19 April 2022 6:52am

In November 2021, we proposed a number of changes to our funding guidelines covering child protection matters.

The proposed changes are intended to ensure funding for children and parents involved in child protection legal proceedings aligns with new court processes around readiness hearings, and to ensure that funding for these hearings is financially sustainable.

Other changes are intended to support early resolution and high-quality legal representation and to better define client eligibility and clarify entitlement to particular fees.

We have received feedback from a wide range of people including clients, advocacy groups and legal practitioners across regional and metropolitan areas.

Your feedback has helped us to understand the impact of the proposed changes on clients, lawyers and on others involved in the child protection system.

New proposal regarding final contest preparation fee

Feedback from legal practitioners has also prompted us to consider one new proposal.

We will retain the overall final contest preparation fee at its current level and propose to separate the fee into components of general preparation ($629) and subpoena inspection ($400).

This would enable practitioners to pay counsel where they are briefed to undertake subpoena inspection. The proposed subpoena inspection fee is in line with the subpoena fee in Commonwealth family law matters.

We welcome your feedback on this new proposal.

Download the new:

This contains additional information about the new proposal, as well as detail about how we plan to proceed in relation to each proposal we have consulted on.

Following consideration of feedback on this additional proposal and consultation with the Legal Services Board and Commission, a final decision about all proposals will be made by the VLA Board.

How to provide feedback

The new proposal we are seeking feedback on is on page 3 of the fact sheet.

Please send your feedback by email to Associate Director, Child Protection, Elicia Savvas at or by calling (03) 9269 0118.

Please send all feedback by COB Friday 29 April 2022.

More information

Refer to the current state family guidelinesExternal Link .

Reviewed 29 April 2022