The tendering of legal aid

Kinross, Julie (1998). The tendering of legal aid Master's Thesis, School of Social Work and Social Planning, The University of Queensland.

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Author Kinross, Julie
Thesis Title The tendering of legal aid
School, Centre or Institute School of Social Work and Social Planning
Institution The University of Queensland
Publication date 1998-11-25
Thesis type Master's Thesis
Open Access Status Not Open Access
Supervisor Ian O’Connor
Total pages 189
Collection year 2004
Language eng
Subjects L
18 Law and Legal Studies
Formatted abstract
This thesis establishes that a fiscal crisis occurred in the legal aid system in the early 1990s. The result was a restriction in the availability of legal aid for some types of legal matters, in particular civil law cases. Various reviews of the legal aid system were conducted throughout the 1980s and 1990s some of which identified rising professional costs as a significant factor in the shrinking availability of the legal aid dollar. Few reforms to combat that issue were proposed or implemented.

The study examines the benefits and disadvantages of introducing competition policy to the delivery mechanism of a community service, legal aid. It concludes that while tendering has generally delivered cost savings, its impact on the quality of services is more ambiguous. The issues in introducing tendering to a community service are also discussed.

The study describes the development and implementation of the Tendering Project and identifies key historical factors and forces which influenced the nature of the Project and its outcomes. It found that the legal aid system is currently captured by the interests of the legal profession and this has shackled the legal aid system's ability to be an effective advocate for recipients of legal aid. The study found that the exposure of the legal profession as a whole to the forces of competition would decrease the cost of justice and allow a greater distribution of the legal aid dollar. If the savings were retained within the legal aid system, they could be used to either enhance the quality of legal aid services or increase the volume of those services.
Keyword Contracting out -- Australia
Legal aid -- Australia

Document type: Thesis
Collection: UQ Theses (non-RHD) - UQ staff and students only
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Created: Sat, 25 Aug 2007, 04:31:25 EST