Disbursements Scale

The following fees are maximum fees which can only be varied by the Commission in a specific case, (other than the case where a party or the parties have paid into Trust, sufficient moneys to pay for a report charged at an amount higher than that fixed by this Scale), or by a periodic update of the Scale.

 

 

ITEM

FAMILY LAW - ASSESSMENTS & REPORTS

FEE PAYABLE

1.

Standard Family Assessment

$1287

2.

Review of Standard Family Assessment & Report

$644

3.

Supplementary Standard Family Assessment & Report

$644

4.

Complex Family Assessment & Report

$1,931

5.

Review of Complex Family Assessment & Report

$968

 

Others

6.

Assessment and Report - Psychiatrist

$1,167

7.

Treating Specialists Report

Up to $966

8.

Treating General Practitioners Report

Up to $453

9.

Treating Medical/Counsellor's Report

Up to $643

10.

Other Investigators – hourly rate

Up to $80

11.

Parentage Testing Report (standard)

Additional parties - per party

Subsequent test

$675

$180

$394

12.

Cancelled appointment – per party

(Where an expert sets aside time to interview parties for the purposes of an assessment and the appointment is cancelled with less than 24 hours’ notice)

$80

 

FAMILY LAW - ATTENDANCE AT COURT

13.

Less than a full day – hourly rate

$191

14.

Full day

$966

 

CRIMINAL LAW

15.

Assessment & Report (inc. Gaol visit) Psychiatrist

Where more than two gaol visits required (additional 2 hours)

Up to $1,167

Up to $1,544

16.

Specialist psychiatric/expert from interstate/overseas, having satisfied ALL general criteria (1-9)

Up to $2,962

17

Psychologist

Up to $966

18.

Treating Specialist's report
(eg Orthopaedic Surgeon, Forensic Immunologist, Psychiatrist, Obstetrics, Surgeon, etc)

Up to$ 966

19.

Treating General Practitioner's Report

Up to $454

20.

Attendance at Court to give evidence - hourly rate

$191

21.

Attendance at Court to give evidence - full day

$966

22.

Specialists Safety Experts- Interview & Report & Technical Investigators- Handwriting experts, I/T forensic analysis

Up to $1,544

23.

Other Investigators, Process Servers etc – hourly rate

$80

 

CIVIL LAW

24.

Same as criminal scale for above categories

 

25.

Specialist Safety Experts - Interview & Report & Technical Investigators

Up to $1,544

26.

Other Investigators, Process Servers, etc – hourly rate

$80

 

IN NEED OF CARE

27.

Complex Family Assessment & Report involving more than one family

Up to $1,930

28.

Family Assessment & Report

(Interaction parents with children)

Up to $1,287

29.

Family Assessment & Report ( Parents only)

Up to $966

 

GENERAL

30.

Professional witnesses can also claim a fee based on lost income due to absence from Office or Surgery to attend Court to give evidence, based on the above scale. In cases where the expert seeks to claim actual loss of income due to attendance at Court to give evidence, relevant details should be supplied for the Commission's consideration for reimbursement of that loss eg: actual cancellation, loss of a lecturing appointment, postponed surgery, etc.

 

 

31.

Lost time – daily rate

$966

32.

Attendance at court to give evidence

$966

33.

There is therefore a  MAXIMUM DAILY CLAIM for professional witnesses in such matters.

$1,932

 

 

 

Disbursements Scale (from 1 December 2014)

Explanatory Notes

General

  • The following general provisions apply to expert expenses. These provisions should be read in conjunction with the specific provisions for fees for expert reports.
  • When assigned practitioners seek funding for an expert's report, they must ensure that the particular expert will:
  • Report in accordance with the fees outlined in this Scale, and
  • Attend Court to give evidence on the fees outlined in this Scale.
  • They must inform the Commission when seeking aid that the proposed expert has agreed to these requirements.
  • If the Commission is going to approve an extension of legal assistance to be granted for the engagement of an expert witness and if a South Australian independent resident expert is available, then that expert must ordinarily be engaged.
  • When an aided person wishes to engage an interstate, or overseas expert, they must demonstrate to the Legal Services Commission that comprehensive enquiries have been made within South Australia, or in the case of the proposed overseas witnesses, within Australia, as to those holding the necessary qualifications and expertise in the relevant field.
  • If there is no such person available in South Australia, or clearly none that would be either acceptable to the Court in terms of knowledge, qualifications or expertise, or only persons who lack considerable reputation amongst their peers, then the Commission may allow interstate expert to be engaged.
  • If there is no such person available interstate or clearly none that would be either acceptable to the Court in terms of knowledge, qualifications or expertise, or only persons who lack considerable reputation amongst their peers, then the Commission may allow overseas experts to be engaged.
  • However, because interstate or overseas witnesses will cost more than local witnesses, especially for travel and accommodation etc, the person seeking to engage an expert from interstate or overseas must satisfy the Commission that the importance or relevance of expert's evidence is such that his, her or their case would be significantly prejudiced if they were restricted to calling a South Australian resident expert, in the case of an interstate witness. This prejudice may be established by reference to a previous similar matter, or some other compelling and cogent factors, which may include an expert's prior extensive involvement in the case.
  • The Commission must be satisfied that an aided person's case would be so prejudiced because interstate, or overseas, witnesses will inevitably consume more limited legal aid funds, and in most cases, considerably more than local experts. The Commission therefore must have this clear assurance before it risks its funds, in order to satisfy the two well-settled arms of the Commission's Merits Test (ie "the prudent self-funding litigant" and "the proper use of public funds" tests).

TRAVEL, ACCOMMODATION AND SUBSISTENCE EXPENSES

General

Witnesses from Interstate/Overseas

  1. Economy class air fare, plus taxi fare to and from airports.
  2. Car expenses and train fares will normally only be allowed in special circumstances, such as where there is an aversion to air travel, or several witnesses can travel by car together.

Witnesses within South Australia

  1. If public transport is available, economy class air or train fare, plus taxi fare to and from airport.
  2. Car expenses may be paid (at Public Service rates) for professional witnesses and where several witnesses can travel together.
  3. Taxi transport from hotel to court is allowed.

Accommodation & Subsistence

Necessary subsistence and accommodation will be paid strictly in accordance with the schedules issued from time to time by the Commissioner for Public Employment, relating to travel within South Australia, Interstate and Overseas.

 

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