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Multiple grants of aid policy - committal and higher court matters

If an applicant applies for legal aid for criminal law matters and they already have an existing grant of aid for other committal and/or higher court criminal law matters in the same court, the multiple grants of aid guidelines will be applied.

The multiple grants of aid guidelines state that:

  • When an applicant applies for aid for separate criminal law matters which are to be heard in the same court, only one grant of aid shall be given for all charges.
  • When an applicant has been granted aid for criminal law matters in the same court and is charged with additional related offences only one grant of aid shall be given for all charges.

When considering matters in accordance with the multiple grants of aid guidelines consideration is given to the timing of the case preparation and whether the matters can be joined together.

Additional preparation may be approved only if practitioner has already prepared or substantially prepared a matter and a new charge is laid which requires further preparation. This can not be the case when aid is applied for at the same time.

Additional preparation for further charges

Additional preparation may only be approved if Legal Aid Queensland is satisfied that the practitioner has fully prepared for one set of charges when further charges are laid against the client. When all charges will be dealt with together, the following examples do not justify additional preparation.

  • There is more than one police brief, or
  • There are separate indictments/complaints, or
  • The next court dates are different.

If the practitioner applies for legal aid for all charges at the same time, additional preparation will not be approved.

Different plea for charges to be heard the same court

If a client has multiple charges and is wanting to defend one or more of the charges and plead guilty to the rest of the charges, all matters should be dealt with under one grant of aid if all charges can be dealt with at the same time in the same court.

Separate indictments

Where separate indictments are issued but the District/Supreme Court hearing for all indictments occurs on the same day in the same court, all matters should be dealt with under one grant of aid.

Breaches of non-custodial sentences

If a client has a matter set down for sentence and has a breach dealt with on the same day in the same court, both matters should be dealt with under one grant of aid.

Separate committal hearings on the same day in the same court

If a client has three separate committal hearings on the same day with or without cross examination at the same court, all matters should be dealt with under one grant of aid.

Retrospective application of multiple grants of aid guidelines

If separate grants of aid are issued because it was not anticipated that the charges would be dealt with at the same time in the same court, but all of charges are dealt with at the same time in the same court, court time is only payable on one file and preparation can only be claimed on multiple files if Legal Aid Queensland is satisfied that the practitioner had fully prepared for one set of charges when further charges are laid against the client.

The multiple grants of aid policy does not apply to summary plea or trial criminal law matters. Please refer to definition of a new matter.

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