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Annual Report 2017 - 2018

Measuring performance

Measuring our performance helps improve client services

Legal Aid NSW has implemented a range of initiatives to monitor and review its performance to improve the quality of planning and service delivery.

We again exceeded the performance benchmark in the National Partnership Agreement on Legal Assistance Services 2015–2020 requiring 95% or more of representation services to be delivered to people experiencing financial disadvantage, achieving 98.5%.

We developed a new monitoring and evaluation framework that aligns with NSW Government Program Evaluation Guidelines. This will assist us to monitor the achievement of key outcomes for clients, the community and the justice system and inform project/service design to improve service delivery through knowledge of what works.

We reviewed our legal advice services to understand how and to whom we are delivering our advice services, and to inform the development of a high level advice framework in 2018–2019.

We engaged the Law and Justice Foundation to conduct a process evaluation of the first nine months of our new Domestic Violence Unit.

Internal reviews into services, systems and roles are regularly undertaken to provide a better understanding of technical and practical issues affecting clients, staff and the business. These reviews involve consultation and analysis and form an evidence base to support decisions to adapt, expand or change roles, systems and services.

Key performance Indicators2015–162016–172017–18
Community awareness of legal rights and responsibilities
Client satisfaction rating N/A 87.0% N/A*
Number of information services provided 528,798 517,888 520,479
Rate per 100,000 of NSW population accessing information services 6,873 6,644 6,690
Number of advice and minor assistance services provided 147,419 141,000 145,768
Rate per 100,000 of NSW population accessing advice and minor assistance services 1,916 1,809 1,874
Number of publications distributed 729,120 752,270 681,798
Rate per 100,000 of people accessing publications 9,477 9,651 8,763
Accessibility of legal aid
Means test income limit as a % of national minimum weekly wage 60.9% 59.5% 57.6%
Percentage of Local Court sittings serviced by duty solicitor schemes 100% 100% 100%
Representation service standards
Percentage of satisfactory comprehensive in-house file reviews 98.0% 99.4% 97.8%
Number of Legal Aid NSW lawyers with specialist accreditation 79 77 79
Number of Legal Aid NSW lawyer attendances at training sessions 2,783 2,781 2,577
Number of private lawyer attendances at Legal Aid NSW training sessions 700 511 512

*N/A–surveys conducted every two years.

Reporting against the National Partnership Agreement

Commonwealth funding to Legal Aid NSW is governed by the National Partnership Agreement on Legal Assistance Services 2015–2020 (NPA).

OBJECTIVE Excellence in legal services

The National Partnership Agreement on Legal Assistance Services 2015–2020 (NPA) provides funding to legal aid commissions and community legal centres to improve access to justice for disadvantaged people, in a more integrated, efficient and effective manner. This is the third year of reporting against the NPA.

Legal Aid NSW reports against a number of performance indicators every six months. We also coordinate reporting on behalf of the state for services delivered by Community Legal Centres.

We report the number of legal assistance services for service types and law types, facilitated resolution processes and their outcomes, and the number and proportion of representation services to priority clients. Priority clients include: children and young people (up to 24 years); people experiencing financial disadvantage; Indigenous Australians; older people (aged over 65 years); people experiencing, or at risk of, family violence; people residing in rural or remote areas; people who are culturally and linguistically diverse; and people with a disability or mental illness.

Of all the Commonwealth representation services to priority groups, the highest number and proportion was to people experiencing financial disadvantage, namely, 10,726 or 98.5 %.

NPA performance indicators: July 2017 to June 2018

Selected NPA performance indicators and benchmarks
Performance indicatorpercentageBenchmark
Proportion of representation services to people experiencing financial disadvantage 98.5% 95%
Proportion of facilitated resolution conferences held by Legal Aid NSW resulting in either partial or full settlement 79.0%* N/A

*Percentage of Commonwealth conferences only. The combined total for State and Commonwealth conferences was 79.4 %.

Collaborative service planning

In March 2018, Legal Aid NSW provided the Commonwealth with a report on collaborative service planning in NSW. The report includes the following examples of collaborative service planning:

The report includes the following examples of collaborative service planning:

calendar iconThe year ahead

In 2018-2019, we will evaluate the:

  • Remote Preferred Provider Scheme
  • Civil Law Service for Aboriginal Communities
  • Children's Civil Law Service