Attendance on prison visits and visits to other places of confinement (not the watch-house)

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    Payment rules

    One prison visit fee is payable per stage of matter where the defendant is in custody subject to the following:

    • The fee is not payable where the attendance on the defendant is in the court/police cells or via video-link.
    • The fee is payable to both solicitor and counsel if both attend at the prison/place of confinement.
    • Travelling expense is payable in relation to this attendance.
    • Travelling time is not payable for prison visits.
    • Prison visits are not claimable in matters for which an expensive case grant has been approved.

    The prison visit fee is designed to compensate the practitioner for the time spent travelling to the prison and for managing the administrative arrangements associated with the prison visit. (Taking instruction from a client in prison is included in the preparation fee under the substantive grant of aid).

    When conducting a prison visit, a clerk is paid at 50% of the solicitor’s rates.

    Where a practitioner attends a correctional centre but is unable to conference with their client due to unforeseen circumstances such as the prison is in lock-down, the prison visit fee is still claimable.

    If the practitioner interviews a client who is in custody via video-link and travels a distance of more than 35 km to conduct the interview they may claim travel time and expenses.

    Audit requirements

    For audit purposes, the practitioner’s file must contain notes supporting the attendance which details date, time and location of visit and persons attending.

    Last updated 25 May 2018