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ELEMENTS OF AN EFFECTIVE LEGAL SYSTEM. ELEMENT 1 – Fair and unbiased hearing. * - Independent judge - Very strict rules of evidence and procedure - Parties.

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Presentation on theme: "ELEMENTS OF AN EFFECTIVE LEGAL SYSTEM. ELEMENT 1 – Fair and unbiased hearing. * - Independent judge - Very strict rules of evidence and procedure - Parties."— Presentation transcript:

1 ELEMENTS OF AN EFFECTIVE LEGAL SYSTEM

2 ELEMENT 1 – Fair and unbiased hearing. * - Independent judge - Very strict rules of evidence and procedure - Parties are in control of their own case - Use of legal representation - Parties can call their own witnesses E.G Thomas Towle case - Cross-examination - Appeals system - Adversary system -Jury system

3 ELEMENT 2 – Access to Dispute Resolution - We have courts, tribunals and ADR - Good legal system- gives people access to it - Fast - Effective access -Money, culture or social differences shouldnt impact on peoples access- true access.

4 ELEMENT 3 – Timely resolution of Disputes. - Delays -Criminal: Supreme Court 8 months -Civil: 13 to 15 months -Family: up to 2 years *After waiting time- when ready to go. E.G- Russel street bombing Use of Tribunals, ADR, Pre-trial Procedures - Choose to have case heard summarily - Hand-up brief - Mention System - Legal Aid

5 ELEMENT 4 – Recognition of Values and Rights - Should recognise how our society operates - Morals and values change over time *Morals historically come from church E.G: gay marriages, IVF, adoption, drug testing, abortion - Laws should reflect the morals of society

6 DELAYS Causes: People changing their not guilty plea The number of bail absconders is increasing Committal hearings Need for legal representation Number of jury disagreements is increasing Unevenness in the workload of courts Judges taking time; reserving judgement Deliberate delay tactics

7 Delays causes: Heavy workloads of experienced barristers Complex cases

8 DELAYS Changes: Better use of computers Use of More tribunals Getting rid of juries in civil cases Mention and committal hearings; splitting the guilty from not guilty Judges more involved in trials Set a time limit for cases

9 COSTS Causes: Lack of legal aid Not being able to fit the criteria for legal aid Lawyers cost money People cant sue, due to lack of money Appeals are very expensive Government supplies a maximum of $ for legal aid Legal aid not granted in criminal cases, when defendant is most likely to be found guilty

10 COSTS Changes: Better use of VCAT Increased use of paralegals Contingency fees; lawyer does not make you pay, but they share in damages awarded. Better use of law students Do it yourself legal kits.

11 CULTURAL/SOCIAL PROBLEMS Causes We dont recognise cultural traditions Lack of interpretors Language barriers Most ethnics=lower class, less money High aboriginal death in custody rate

12 Social/cultural Changes Koori court Expansion of legal aid Community education programs School legal programs

13 LACK OF KNOWLEDGE Causes People unable to access law, if unaware of the law People unaware of their rights Legal termanology

14 Lack of knowledge Changes Introduction of plain English into the legal system Legislation more accessable Better legal studies resources used in schools Booklets and leaflets published Better use of media Lawyers knowing multiple languages

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