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
For legal aid to be granted for representation in QDAC the following tests must be satisfied:
the applicant is subject to a QDAC Treatment Order
Applicants seeking a grant of legal assistance should forward all of the following documents for assessment:
a completed and signed Legal Aid Queensland (LAQ) application form
a copy of the QDAC treatment order
In-house practitioners seeking a grant of legal assistance should electronically lodge an application or extension of aid request via the grants online system and ensure a signed application for aid is held on file.
Once a participant has been sentenced to a QDAC Treatment Order, LAQ in-house practitioners from the Drug and Alcohol Court Team will represent the participant for the duration of that order. There is no requirement for applicants to meet means, merit or guideline tests if they have been sentenced to a QDAC order.
Grants of legal assistance may also be available in QDAC prior to sentence if the applicant for aid meets the standard criteria applied to a plea of guilty in the magistrates court or committal proceedings. Requests relating to additional charges laid during the operational period of a QDAC order are also subject to standard eligibility criteria.
The QDAC model was developed in response to recommendations made by the Drug and Specialist Court Review and will operate under the following model:
Court process related to the operation of QDAC are outlined in the Magistrates Courts Practice Direction No.1 of 2018.
To be eligible to be referred to QDAC the defendant must meet the following criteria:
For a Drug and Alcohol Treatment Order to be made, a person must reside within the district of the Brisbane Magistrates Court as prescribed in Justices Regulation 2014 (Schedule 1). The divisions of the Brisbane Magistrates Courts District are Central division, Holland Park division, Richlands division, Sandgate division and Wynnum division
Referral to QDAC requires the defendant's consent and can be made by the following:
The referrer is required to conduct a preliminary screening by completing Referral Form (Form 1) and provide copies to the Court, Prosecution and the defendant's legal representative.
If the Court considers that the defendant may be eligible for referral, the Magistrate will adjourn the matter to QDAC for an eligibility hearing and refer the defendant for eligibility screening to the review team (Queensland Courts, Queensland Corrective Services, Queensland Health, Queensland Police, and Legal Aid Queensland).
Practitioners from LAQ’s drug and alcohol court team will represent all participants sentenced to a QDAC Treatment Order for the period of that order (2 years).
As QDAC is a post-sentence court there is no requirement for conflict of interest checking.
The grant of aid to prepare for and attend up to 10 review hearings is DAC3.
The grant of aid to prepare for and attend up to 5 breach hearings is DAC4.
The grant of aid to prepare for and attend a final hearing / graduation is DAC6.