Legal Aid Queensland (LAQ) has updated its process for the appointment of court-ordered Independent Children’s Lawyers (ICL) following recent Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia changes, including earlier appointments of ICLs.
The updated process aims to ensure the safety and privacy of all parties is protected when LAQ is arranging a practitioner to act as an ICL and sending correspondence to parties.
When LAQ receives an order from the court about an ICL being appointed in a matter, it writes to both parties to assess whether they have capacity to make a financial contribution towards the ICL’s legal costs. This is a requirement of the organisation’s funding arrangements with the Commonwealth.
Under the updated process, LAQ will email the practitioner confirming they have been appointed ICL in the matter and ask them to respond within 14 days with any concerns about sending contribution letters to the parties. If no response is received, or the ICL confirms there are no concerns, LAQ will send contribution letters to the parties after 14 days.
This allows practitioners in a matter to take the necessary precautions if they do not want a party informed of proceedings at the time a court appoints an ICL.
For any enquiries about this process, contact the Allocations Team on email@example.com