In this section
START OF Policies and procedures
START OF Grants Handbook
START OF What do we fund?
START OF Criminal law
END OF Criminal law
END OF What do we fund?
END OF Grants Handbook
END OF Policies and procedures
Committal hearings in the magistrates court in respect of charges for which the maximum penalty exceeds 14 years are not subject to a merit test as they are classified as specified criminal proceedings. For legal aid to be granted for a committal hearing in under guideline 4.1 – committals the following test must be satisfied:
If the applicant has:
Applicants seeking a grant of legal assistance should forward all of the following documents for assessment:
Preferred Suppliers seeking a grant of legal assistance should electronically submit an application for aid via the Grants Online system along with:
The following documents must be retained on the practitioner’s file but may be requested by Legal Aid Queensland:
Committal proceedings in the magistrates court in respect of charges for which the maximum penalty exceeds 14 years are means tested only, and are not subject to the merit test.
The merit exemption for specified matters only applies where the proceedings are to proceed or are likely to proceed by way of committal. These guidelines therefore apply to matters that:
If an applicant is charged with an offence for which the maximum penalty exceeds 14 years, and that offence is to be determined summarily, the means test as well as the relevant guidelines for a plea of guilty in the magistrates court or trial in the magistrates court will be applied.
The grant of aid for a hand up or registry committal hearing is MR1.
If the charge(s) involve serious criminal law matters which require counsel to work with the solicitor in the early stage of proceedings, an extension of aid may be available for counsel provided the merits test and the extent of funding guidelines for counsel are met. The grant of aid for counsel to be engaged in the early stage of proceedings is MR1A.
An extension of aid is available for solicitors and counsel to make a formal application to the magistrate for:
The grant of aid for a solicitor to make a formal summary application is MR2.
A grant of aid for solicitor and counsel to make a formal application to the magistrate is subject to the merits test and the extent of funding guidelines for counsel. The grant of aid is MR4.
For legal aid to be granted for cross examination of witnesses at a committal hearing, the prosecution must have agreed to witnesses being cross-examined or leave to cross-examine witnesses has been granted by the court.
The grant of aid for a solicitor to appear at a committal hearing to cross-examine witnesses is MR3.
The grant of aid for solicitor and counsel to appear at a committal hearing to cross-examine witnesses is MR5. Funding for counsel is subject to the extent of funding guidelines for counsel.
Where additional days of committal are required, or negotiations have resulted in the matter proceeding as a summary plea the following grants of aid are available:
ATSILS/ Replacement barrister to appear at day one or additional days of a committal hearing with cross examination:
All applications for aid for in relation to people smuggling matters are determined by a senior grants officer.
A decision to refuse legal aid for this type of matter may be appealed to the external review officer (refer to review of decisions).