Guideline 10 – Serious Offenders Act 2018

Guideline 10 – Serious Offenders Act 2018

Victoria Legal Aid (VLA) will generally make a grant of legal assistance to a person in the following proceedings pursuant to the Serious Offenders Act 2018:

  • an application by the Director of Public Prosecutions for a Detention Order
  • an application by the Secretary to the Department of Justice and Regulation for an Emergency Detention Order
  • an application by the Secretary to the Department of Justice and Regulation for a Supervision Order
  • an application by the Secretary to the Department of Justice and Regulation for a review of conditions or renewal of a Detention or Supervision Order
  • an application for review of conditions by the person subject to an Order under this Act

If:

  • the benefit of representation outweighs the detriment that the person is likely to suffer if they are not represented, and
  • the proceedings will terminate in a manner favourable to the person, or
  • it is reasonable in all the circumstances, having regard to section 24 of the Legal Aid Act 1978, the merit of the application and benefit to the person, to provide a grant of legal assistance.

Documentary requirements

All applications under this guideline will generally be decided via VLA's simplified grants assessment process except the following must be decided via the standard grants assessment process:

  • applications for a review of conditions by the person subject to an Order under this Act
  • applications for special disbursements including to fund an expert assessment and report.

Where the matter is to be decided via the standard grants assessment process, a member of the section 29A practitioner panel seeking a grant of legal assistance must submit an application in ATLAS and include for assessment:

  • relevant proof of means
  • the supervision order itself (if in relation to an offender's application to review conditons of a supervision order)
  • the lawyer's assessment of why it is reasonable in all the circumstances to provide a grant of legal assistance having regard to the merit of the application and benefit to the client (if an application is made by a lawyer).