Criminal Law Cost Scale

(operative from 1 October 2013)

All new ie initial grants of aid and extensions of existing assignments approved on or after 1 October 2013 will be made in accordance with the following Scale.

See also the Explanatory Notes.
 

ITEM

DESCRIPTION OF WORK

FEE PAYABLE

MAGISTRATES COURT and YOUTH COURT (Criminal Jurisdiction)

1.

Solicitor and counsel – hourly rate

$137

GUILTY PLEAS

2.

Guilty plea - instructions and all preparation - solicitor

$256

3.

Guilty plea - counsel

$256

4.

Guilty plea in social security matter where there are more than 30 counts - solicitor

$512

5.

Guilty plea in social security matter where there are more than 30 counts - counsel

$256

6.

Guilty plea - additional solicitor's proportion in consolidated pleas

$256

BAIL

7.

Bail application - opposed

$274

8.

Bail application to vary - where opposed or where separate appearance required and not opposed

$137

9.

Bail application/variation - if unopposed and no separate appearance required by the Court

No fee payable

DEFENDED MATTERS (TRIALS & ORAL COMMITTALS)

10.

Instructions - including all preparation - solicitor

$548

11.

Pre-trial conference - all preparation and attendance

$137

12.

Special reasons application and hearing

$411

13.

Fee on brief and first day - counsel

$1,095

14.

Each subsequent day - counsel

$822

15.

½ day trial - fee on brief - counsel

$685

DEFENDED MATTERS NOT PROCEEDING ON THE MORNING OF THE TRIAL

16.

Instructions - including all preparation - solicitor

$548

17.

Fee on brief and time in court - counsel

$411

GENERAL

18.

No case to answer submissions (major indictable at committal)

$548

19.

Case conference (major indictable matters)

$452

20.

Release on licence

$822

21.

Set non-parole period

$548

SUPREME AND DISTRICT COURTS (Criminal Jurisdiction)

22.

Solicitor – hourly rate

$164

23.

Counsel – hourly rate

$188

24.

Queen’s Counsel/Senior Counsel – hourly rate

$261

GUILTY PLEAS

25.

Guilty plea - instructions and all preparation - solicitor

$698

26.

Guilty plea - counsel

$375

BAIL

27.

Bail application - opposed - instructions and all preparation - solicitor

$328

28.

Bail application - opposed - counsel

$282

29.

Bail variation - opposed or where not opposed but a separate appearance required by the court

$188

30.

Bail variation - not contested and no separate appearance required

No fee payable

31.

Bail review - instructions, all documents and all preparation- solicitor

$328

32.

Bail review - all preparation and attendances - counsel

$282

DEFENDED MATTERS

33.

Instructions - including all preparation - solicitor

$982

34.

Directions Hearings

$164

35.

Fee on brief and first day - counsel

$1,882

36.

Each subsequent day - counsel

$1,129

37.

Queen's counsel/Senior Counsel fee on brief and first day

$2,609

38.

Queen's counsel/Senior Counsel each subsequent day

$1,565

 

 

 

DEFENDED MATTERS NOT PROCEEDING ON THE MORNING OF THE TRIAL

39.

Instructions - including all preparation - solicitor

$982

40.

Fee on brief and time in court - counsel

$1,129

 

 

 

GENERAL

41.

Release on licence`

$982

42.

Set non-parole period

$982

MAGISTRATES APPEALS

43.

Magistrates appeal - preparation - solicitor

$411

44.

Appeal - against sentence only - counsel

$470

45.

Appeal - others (including complex) - counsel

$941

46.

Queens Counsel - appeal against sentence

$653

47.

Queens Counsel - others (including complex)

$1,304

CCA/FULL COURT

48.

Permission to appeal - preparation - solicitor

$328

49.

Permission to appeal against sentence - counsel

$375

50.

Permission to appeal against sentence - Queens Counsel

$522

51.

Permission to appeal against conviction - counsel

$753

52.

Permission to appeal against conviction - Queens Counsel

$1,043

53.

Permission to appeal against both conviction and sentence - counsel

$753

54.

Permission to appeal against conviction and sentence - Queens Counsel

$1,043

55.

Appeal against conviction - counsel

$1,882

56

Appeal against conviction - solicitor

$982

57.

Appeal against conviction - Queens Counsel

$2,609

58.

Appeal against sentence - counsel

$1,412

59.

Appeal against sentence - Queens Counsel

$1,957

HIGH COURT

60.

Special Leave to appeal - preparation - solicitor

$1,146

61.

Special Leave to appeal - fee on brief and time in court - counsel

$1,882

62.

Special Leave to appeal - fee on brief and time in court - Queen's Counsel/Senior Counsel

$2,609

63.

Appeal - preparation - solicitor

$1,146

64.

Appeal - fee on brief and time in court - counsel

$1,882

65.

Appeal - fee on brief and time in court - Queen's Counsel/Senior Counsel

$2,609

ALL COURTS - MISCELLANEOUS ITEMS

66.

Remand, arraignment, callover

No fee payable

67.

Travelling time

No fee payable

68.

Waiting time

No fee payable

69.

Approved reading time – per hour

$106

70.

Attendance upon judgment

No fee payable

71.

Mileage

Payable only on prior approval

72.

Junior counsel - all trials and appeals where two counsel approved - fee on brief and time in court

$1,314

73.

Junior counsel - each subsequent day

$789

74.

Parole Board advice

$137

(Effective from 12 March 2013)

EXPLANATORY NOTES

MAGISTRATES AND YOUTH COURT MATTERS

Hourly Rate (applicable to special cases only)

1 Magistrates and Youth Court (solicitor and counsel hourly rates)

 It is envisaged that not many matters heard in the Magistrates and Youth Courts will qualify for certification as requiring additional funding over the prescribed lump sums.

A matter will be certified by the Commission for additional funding where the degree of preparation or the difficulty involved is exceptional and the work encompassed by the standard lump sums would, in all of the circumstances, be unreasonable. The amount of extra funding allowed will be specified in an additional commitment certificate. Should further work be required the Commission will always consider such applications which must be made in advance of the work being done. The maximum amounts specified in each commitment certificate aggregate to form the maximum fees payable in relation to a particular grant.

Guilty Pleas

2 Solicitor's proportion

The fee for a guilty plea includes all attendances upon client and preparatory work.

3 Counsel's proportion

The fee on brief includes all attendances on client and at court.

4 Social security matters involving more than 30 counts - solicitor's proportion

The fee for a guilty plea in a social security matter that involves more than 30 counts on the one Information attracts a higher guilty plea fee (which includes all attendances upon client and preparatory work). If there are considerably more than 30 counts, authorisation may be sought for additional funding certification. Each such application will be considered on its individual merits.

5 Social security matters involving 30 counts - counsel's proportion

The fee on brief for a guilty plea in a social security matter that involves more than 30 counts on one Information attracts a higher fee (which includes all attendances upon client and at court). If there are considerably more than 30 counts, authorisation may be sought for additional funding certification. Each such application will be considered on its individual merits.

6 Additional solicitor's fee

This additional fee is payable for up to 3 additional Complaints or Informations or part thereof, over, and above the first 3 Complaints or Informations, and which are the subject of pleas and submissions at the same time as the first 3 Complaints or Informations. This additional fee is only payable where the matters would normally be the subject of a grant of legal aid. The fee is the same regardless of the numbers of counts on each Complaint or Information.

Bail

7 Bail application (opposed)

The fee for a bail application includes all attendances to take instructions, completing application and all attendances at court to argue the application.

8 Bail variation

The fee for a bail variation includes all attendances to take instructions and all attendances at court to argue.

9 Bail application/variation

No fee payable where no separate attendance is required at court.

Defended matters (trials and oral committals)

10 Solicitor's proportion

The fee for a defended matter includes all attendances upon client and preparatory work including preparation of brief. Please note that where commitment has been previously raised in the matter for a guilty plea, the amount for this item which will appear on the certificate aggregates with the previous certificate to the full lump sum fee for defended matters.

11 Pre-trial conference

The fee for a pre-trial conference includes all attendances to take instructions and all attendances at court.

12 Special reasons application and hearing

The fee for a special reasons application includes all attendances upon client and time spent in court making the application.

13 Fee on brief and first day  - Counsel

The fee on brief includes all preparation, reading, conferences and the first day in court. Please note that where commitment has been raised previously in the matter for a guilty plea the amount for this client which will appear on the certificate aggregates with the previous certificate to the full lump sum fee for defended matters.

14 Each subsequent day (refreshers) - Counsel

The fee for refresher includes any reading or conferences during trial and time spent in court.

15 Half day trial - fee on brief - Counsel - (item 10 applies to solicitor's proportion)

The fee on brief includes all preparation, reading, conferences and half day in court. (see note 1 for special cases)

Defended matters not proceeding on the morning of the trial

16 Instructions - including all preparation - Solicitor

The fee for a defended matter which resolves by plea or withdrawal includes all attendances upon client and preparatory work including preparation of brief.

17 Fee on Brief and time in Court - Counsel

The fee for a defended matter which resolves or does not proceed due to unavailability of a court room or magistrate on the morning of the trial includes all preparation, reading, conferences and time spent in court making submissions and attending upon sentence.

GENERAL

18 No case to answer submissions (major indictable at committal)

No case to answer submissions may be authorised in circumstances where sufficient information is provided to the Commission for it to determine that the submissions satisfy the merits test.

19 Case Conference

A Case Conference, if ordered by a Magistrate, will be funded for major indictable matters and includes all preparation and attendance at the Conference.

20 Release on licence

Release on licence includes all preparation and time spent in court.

21 Set non-parole period

An application to set a non-parole period includes all preparation and time spent in court.

SUPREME AND DISTRICT COURT

Hourly Rates

22 Supreme and District Court - solicitor hourly rates

A matter will be certified by the Commission for additional funding where the matter involves unusual complexity or other special circumstances compared with the usual range of such matters and where the work encompassed by the standard lump sums would, in all of the circumstances, be unreasonable.

The amount of extra funding allowed will be specified in an additional commitment certificate. Should it be considered that further funding is necessary in light of matters of an exceptional nature, then the Commission will always consider such applications which must be made in advance of the work being done. The maximum amounts specified in each commitment certificate aggregate to form the maximum fees payable in relation to a particular grant.

23 Supreme and District Courts - counsel hourly rates

A matter will be certified by the Commission for additional funding where the matter involves unusual complexity or other special circumstances compared with the usual range of such matters and where the work encompassed by the standard lump sums would, in all of the circumstances, be unreasonable.

The amount of extra funding allowed will be specified in an additional commitment certificate. Should it be considered that further funding is necessary in light of matters of an exceptional nature, then the Commission will always consider such applications which must be made in advance of the work being done. The maximum amounts specified in each commitment certificate aggregate to form the maximum fees payable in relation to a particular grant.

24 Queen's Counsel/Senior Counsel  - Supreme and District Court hourly rates

A grant of aid will only be extended to brief Queen's Counsel/Senior Counsel if, in the opinion of the Director, the matter is of:

  • sufficient complexity; or
  • such an unusual nature; or
  • sufficient importance, on questions of law, or due to intricacy of facts, or involves potential changes to the law,

so as to warrant the briefing of Queen's Counsel/Senior Counsel. The Commission must be satisfied that the skill and services of Queen's Counsel/Senior Counsel are required for the adequate presentation of the particular case. Where a matter is certified for Queen's Counsel/Senior Counsel the same scale of fees applies in all jurisdictions.

Guilty Pleas

25 Guilty Plea - solicitor's proportion

The fee for a guilty plea includes all attendances upon client and at court, all preparation and preliminary steps other than oral committal. (for oral committal see scale items for Defended matters (trial and oral committals), and notes 10 to 15).

26 Guilty Plea - counsel's proportion

The fee for counsel's proportion on a guilty plea includes all preparation, reading, conferences and time spent in court.

Bail

27 Bail application (opposed) - solicitor's proportion

The fee for a bail application includes all attendances to take instructions, drawing application and affidavit in support and lodging documents.

28 Bail application (opposed) - counsel's proportion

The fee for counsel's proportion on a bail application includes all preparation, reading, conferences and time spent in court.

29 Bail variation

The fee includes all attendances to take instructions and time spent in court.

30 Bail variation (not contested etc)

No fee payable.

31 Bail review (solicitors proportion)

The fee for a bail review includes all attendances to take instructions, drawing application and affidavit in support and lodging documents.

32 Bail review (counsels proportion)

The fee for counsel's proportion on a bail review includes all preparation, reading, conferences and time spent in court.

Defended matters

33 Solicitor's proportion

The fee for a defended matter includes all attendances upon client and preparatory work including preparation of brief.

34 Directions Hearings

The fee for a directions hearing includes taking of instructions, negotiations and attendance at court including waiting time and travel to and from court.

35 Counsel's proportion - fee on brief

The fee on brief includes all preparation, reading, conferences and first day in court.

36 Counsel's proportion - subsequent days (refreshers)

The fee for refresher includes any reading or conferences during trial and time spent in court.

37 Fee on brief - Queen's Counsel/Senior Counsel

The fee on brief includes all preparation, reading, conferences and first day in court.

38 Subsequent days (refreshers) - Queen's Counsel/Senior Counsel

The fee for refresher includes any reading or conferences during trial and time spent in court.

Defended matters not proceeding on the morning of the trial (or in some circumstances a day or so prior to the trial date)

39 Solicitor's proportion

The fee for a defended matter which does not proceed on the morning of the trial (or in some circumstances a day or so prior to the trial date) includes all attendances upon the client and preparatory work including preparation of brief.

40 Counsel's proportion

The fee for a defended matter does not proceed on the morning of the trial (or in some circumstances a day or so prior to the trial date), includes all preparation, reading, conferences and time spent in court making submissions and attending upon sentence.

GENERAL

41 Release on licence

 

42 Set non-parole period

 

Magistrates Appeals

43 Solicitor's proportion

The fee for a Magistrates Appeal includes all attendances upon client, drawing and lodging notice of appeal and affidavit in support, and preparation of the brief for counsel.

44 Counsel's proportion - appeal against sentence only

The fee on brief includes all preparation, reading, conferences and time spent in court.

45 Counsel's proportion - other (including complex)

The fee on brief includes all preparation, reading, conferences and time spent in court.

46 Queens Counsel/Senior Counsel - appeal against sentence

The fee on brief includes all preparation, reading, conferences and time spent in court.

47 Queens Counsel/Senior Counsel - other appeal (including complex)

The fee on brief includes all preparation, reading, conferences, and time spent in Court.

CCA/FULL COURT

Permission to appeal

48 Solicitor's proportion

The fee for permission to appeal to the CCA includes all attendances upon client, drawing and lodging notice of appeal, any other necessary documents and preparation of the brief for counsel.

NOTE: The fee on brief for includes all preparation, reading, conference and time spent in court.

49 Permission to appeal - Counsel's proportion against sentence

50 Permission to appeal against sentence - Queens Counsel/Senior Counsel

51 Permission to appeal against conviction - counsel

52 Permission to appeal against conviction - Queens Counsel/Senior Counsel

53 Permission to appeal against both conviction and sentence - counsel

54 Permission to appeal against conviction and sentence - Queens Counsel/Senior Counsel

55 Appeal against conviction - counsel

56 Appeal against conviction - solicitor

57 Appeal against conviction - Queens Counsel/Senior Counsel

58 Appeal against sentence - counsel

59 Appeal against sentence - Queens Counsel/Senior Counsel

HIGH COURT

60 High Court Special Leave to appeal- solicitor's proportion

The fee for an application for Special Leave to appeal to the High Court includes all attendances upon client, drawing and lodging the application, any other necessary documents and preparation of brief for counsel.

61 High Court Special Leave to appeal - counsel's proportion

The fee on brief includes all preparation, reading, conferences and time spent in court.

62 High Court Special Leave to appeal - Queen's Counsel/Senior Counsel

The fee on brief includes all preparation, reading, conferences and time spent in court.

63 High court appeal - solicitor's proportion

The fee for the appeal to the High Court includes all attendances upon the client, drawing and lodging any necessary documents and preparation of the brief for counsel.

64 High Court appeal - counsel's proportion

The fee on brief includes all preparation, reading, conferences and time spent in court.

65 High Court appeal - Queen's Counsel/Senior Counsel

The fee on brief includes all preparation, reading, conferences and time spent in court.

ALL COURTS - MISCELLANEOUS ITEMS

66 Remands, arraignments and callovers

Attendances for remands, arraignments and callovers are included in the lump sum fees. No additional fees will be paid by the Commission.

67 Travelling time

Travelling time is normally included in the lump sum fees.

68 Waiting time

Waiting time is included in the lump sum fees. No additional fees will be paid by the Commission.

69 Approved reading time

Ordinarily reading time is included in the lump sum fees. Additional fees will only be allowed by the Commission where a matter is certified as requiring additional funding.

70 Attendance upon judgment

Attendance upon judgment is included in the lump sum fees

71 Mileage

The Commission does not normally pay mileage fees to practitioners who offer a service to a particular court and are therefore considered as being local to that court, notwithstanding that they do in fact travel from an office not in the general area of that court. However, if for some unforeseen reason the Commission assigns a practitioner/s to a court which that practitioner does not normally service, and it is a Commission generated assignment, then mileage may be approved.

72 Junior Counsel all trials and appeals

Where the Commission approves two counsel, the term junior counsel means counsel who is not leading.

73 Subsequent days (refreshers)

The refresher fee includes any reading and or conferences during the trial and time spent in court.

74 Parole Board advice

The Commission does not fund attendance at Parole Board hearings.

GENERAL

(a) Commitment certificates/Tax Invoices

Commitment certificates/Tax Invoices will be issued by the Commission for all work authorised.

Extensions may be sought as further work is required. Additional commitment certificates will be issued to cover any further work approved by the Commission.

All commitment certificates/Tax Invoices aggregate to form the total amount of funding approved by the Commission.

No payment will be made for work which has not been authorised and for which no commitment certificate/Tax Invoice has been issued by the Commission.

(b) Definition of a grant of aid

The term "grant" is used to describe an approved application for legal assistance and may include more than one matter as long as all matters are related.

A new application must be submitted for any unrelated matters.

A matter is unrelated if it cannot be finalised in the same court at the same time as other matters.

(c) Youth Court matters

Cases heard in the Youth Court will be paid at Magistrate's Court rates.

(d) Terms of Assignment

Practitioners should read the terms of assignment letters and commitment certificates/Tax Invoices carefully. Further authorisation must be sought before the authorised costs can be exceeded, or if work outside the terms of assignment is required. Legal aid, where granted usually dates from the date of receipt of the application, except where urgent telephone or fax approval has been given.

 

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