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Policy Bulletin 2018 / 10 (Criminal Law Policy – domestic violence related changes)

17 Sep 2018

On 4 September 2018, the Legal Aid NSW Board approved changes to the Criminal Law Policy.

Background

The Legal Aid NSW Domestic and Family Violence Strategy 2016-2018 (the Strategy) sets out guiding principles, objectives and actions to ensure that Legal Aid NSW can deliver high quality, client-centred and holistic services to people who are affected by domestic and family violence, and in particular victims.

One of the key objectives of the Strategy is to prioritise victims of domestic and family violence in the delivery of Legal Aid NSW services. One of the main actions to achieve this objective was to review the eligibility polices to ensure access to legal assistance for people experiencing domestic or family violence.

What has changed?

The criminal law policies have been amended to clarify the availability of legal aid to people who are victims of domestic violence and defending criminal charges for DV related offences. We have also streamlined the policies relating to ADVO to ensure clarity.

The changes have been incorporated into:

  • Criminal Law Policy – ADVOs [Policy Online at 4.4]
  • Criminal Law Guidelines [Policy Online at 1.7 and 1.13].

Commencement date

The change applies to applications for legal aid determined on or after 17 September 2018.

Contact for further information

Please contact the Client Eligibility Unit for any questions about the change on anna.coffey@legalaid.nsw.gov.au or 9213 5209.