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Legal Aid Panels

Legal aid panels

The panel application is a single form that can only be submitted by the Principal/nominated Principal of a Law Practice or Barrister. This application form is to be submitted on behalf of all legal practitioners who will undertake legal aid work.

The principal/nominated principal of a law practice can nominate legal practitioners (who hold a current Australian Practising Certificate) within the law practice on the one application form, where they meet the individual panel requirements for the nominated panel/s.

All legal practitioners should read and consider the Legal Aid NSW Quality Standards prior to applying for appointment to Legal Aid NSW Panels. This document applies to all in-house and private legal practitioners who undertake legal aid work and provides clarity on the quality of legal services Legal Aid NSW expects will be delivered when undertaking legal aid work. Upon appointment, the Quality Standards form part of the law practice’s obligations in accordance with the Service Agreement.

The table below provides an overview of all available panels and their requirements. For more in-depth information regarding a panel and their individual requirements click on the “Area of Law” headings on the below tables or refer to the Quality Standards.

Barristers

For direct representation matters, barristers must ensure compliance with the Legal Profession Uniform Conduct (Barristers) Rules, in particular Rule 22. A barrister appointed to the panel may decline to accept a direct representation offer of assignment if it is inappropriate to do the work without the involvement of an instructing solicitor.

Training

Legal Aid NSW will be introducing training course modules for panel members. These modules may form part of the requirement for panel members to remain on a panel or be appointed to a panel. Further information about these training modules will be communicated to panel members as they become available.

CPD Units

Legal practitioners, who meet the individual requirements to undertake legally aided matters under the Indictable Crime, Child Crime, Care and Protection and/or Independent Children’s Lawyer panels, are required to complete 5 CPD units each year.

Panels Structure

Law Practices

Principal of the law practice must have 3 years post admission experience in one area of law.

Criminal

Click on heading above to view more information about the Criminal Law Panels.

Panel
Summary
Indictable Crime*
Child Crime
Jurisdiction

Summary (Adult)

Indictable (Adult)

SACP (Adult & Child)

Appellate (Adult)

Summary (Child)

Indictable (Child)

Appellate (Child)

Solicitor/Barrister Post Admission Experience required in the designated area of law

2 years


Solicitor & Barrister
5 years
(at least 75% of total workload in criminal law)

or

Specialist Accreditation in Criminal Law

Solicitor only
5 years



or

Specialist Accreditation in Criminal Law, Children’s or Advocacy

Solicitor & Barrister
Additional requirements
  

WWCC

Delegation
Delegate summary matters to solicitors with less than two years PAE.
Delegate non-complex indictable matters to solicitors with more than two years PAE in criminal law.
Not permitted

*The Indictable Crime Solicitor and Complex Crime Solicitor Panels have been combined into a single panel.

Family

Click on heading above to view more information about the Family Law Panels.

Family
Care
ICL
Domestic violence
Jurisdiction
Cth Family Law
State Family Law
Cth Family Law (Child)
ADVO
Solicitor/Barrister
Post Admission Experience required in the designated area of law
2 years






Solicitor only
5 years

or

Specialist Accreditation in Children’s Law

Solicitor & Barrister
5 years

(at least 75% of total workload in family law)



Solicitor only
5 years

(ADVO proceedings)




Solicitor & Barrister
Additional requirements
 

Legal Aid NSW Care and Protection Child Representation: Workshop

Satisfactory referee report from a suitable referee confirming five years post admission experience in the Care and Protection jurisdiction
WWCC

National ICL training course (within the last two years)


Legal Aid NSW ICL Nuts and Bolts training course*
 
Delegation

Delegate family law to solicitors with less than two years PAE.

Delegate care adult matters to solicitors with less than five years PAE.

Not permitted

Not permitted

*After completion of the Phase 2 workshop training the practitioner will be identified as eligible to attend the Phase 3 Nuts and Bolts training and will be invited by Legal Aid NSW to register for the annual one-day training. A date has yet to be announced for the next Nuts and Bolts training but will likely take place in February or March each year. Practitioners outside NSW practising in firms seeking to obtain NSW ICL panel membership will also need to complete the Nuts and Bolts training and will need to contact Legal Aid NSW regarding registration for the next annual Nuts and Bolts course. Any questions about ICL training requirements can be emailed to iclwebsite@legalaid.nsw.gov.au.

Civil

Click on heading above to view more information about the Civil Law Panels.

Panel
Civil
Mental Health
Jurisdiction

Civil

Mental Health Review Tribunal

Solicitor/Barrister
Post Admission Experience required in the designated area of law

2 years

Solicitor only

2 years

Solicitor & Barrister

Additional requirements
  
Delegation

Delegate matters to solicitors with less than two years PAE.

Not permitted

Barristers

Click on heading above to view more information about the Barrister Briefing Panels.

Panel
Indictable
Complex
Appellate*
Jurisdiction

Indictable Crime

Complex Crime

Appellate Crime

Solicitor/Barrister
Post Admission Experience required in the designated area of law

5 years PAE in Criminal Law as a solicitor or barrister

7 years PAE in Criminal Law as a barrister

10 years PAE in Criminal Law** as a solicitor or barrister

Additional requirements
  

Two satisfactory referee reports, one from Senior Counsel and one from a member from the Bar Association

Delegation

Not permitted

Not permitted

Not permitted

*The Appellate Barrister Panel is a separate application process for new applicants only. Click here for information about how to apply to this panel.

**Previous Specialist Accreditation will be considered favourably for any application.