find the latest legal job
Senior Associate - Litigation & Dispute Resolution
Category: Litigation and Dispute Resolution | Location: Melbourne CBD & Inner Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· Come work for a firm ranked in Lawyers Weekly Top 25 Attraction Firms
View details
Associate - Workplace Relations & Safety
Category: Industrial Relations and Employment Law | Location: Brisbane CBD & Inner Suburbs Brisbane QLD
· Employer of choice · Strong team culture
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Banking and Finance Law | Location: All Perth WA
· Freelance opportunities through Vario from Pinsent Masons
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Other | Location: All Adelaide SA
· • Qualified lawyer with a strong academic background
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Other | Location: All Melbourne VIC
· • Qualified lawyer with a strong academic background
View details
Bush courts lose lawyers as Legal Aid backs out

Bush courts lose lawyers as Legal Aid backs out

A Darwin magistrate has raised concerns about people facing court without legal representation as Legal Aid backs out of bush courts.

Northern Territory Legal Aid Commission lawyer Ambrith Abayasekara told the Darwin Magistrates Court that due to budget restraints Legal Aid could no longer represent a Wadeye man facing charges of violence, ABC News reports.

The lawyer told the court that Legal Aid lawyers cannot work at bush courts such as Wadeye in the Northern Territory because it could not afford to.

Magistrate Tanya Fong Lim asked the lawyer whether this meant those people facing serious charges are going to court without legal representation, and the lawyer replied that this was correct.

The comments come after the North Australian Aboriginal Justice Agency last month said it has to “pick up the slack” because Legal Aid can no longer afford to represent clients at bush courts.

NAAJA principal solicitor, Jonathon Hunyor, said it is blowing the organisation’s budget.

“Our brief out budget will probably have run out by the end of the year if not early next year,” he said.

“We’re very concerned that people will either be unrepresented and be unable to put their case or they will feel compelled to plead guilty to something that they may not have done or many not even properly understand.”

The Justice Minister Delia Lawrie said the Territory Legal Aid Commission and the Department of Justice are negotiating funding requirements, ABC News reports.

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017


Bush courts lose lawyers as Legal Aid backs out
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
microphone
Oct 20 2017
Podcast: One of law’s most infamous alumni – in conversation with Julian Morrow
In this episode of The Lawyers Weekly Show, Melissa Coade is joined by The Chaser’s Julian Morrow....
protest
Oct 20 2017
High Court overturns ‘excessive’ anti-protest legislation
Bob Brown’s recent victory in the High Court over the Tasmanian government was a win for fundament...
Blocked
Oct 20 2017
Changes to Australian citizenship laws blocked
Attempts to beef up the requirements to obtain Australian citizenship were thwarted this week, after...
APPOINTMENTS
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
opinion
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
Help
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...