Legal aid expense up

by Sol Dolor14 Mar 2018

Justice Minister Andrew Little has revealed that legal aid expenditure in the 12 months to January has significantly increased on the year.

In response to a written question from National MP Alfred Ngaro, Little provided data for six different year-to-date periods from 1 August 2016 until 1 January 2017.

In the year to 1 January, legal aid expense was $84,144,716, up from $77,873,506 in the same period in fiscal 2016/17. In the 12 months to 1 December 2016, the government spent $68,472,478 on legal aid, compared to $61,561,357 in the previous comparable period.

The uptick started in year to 1 November 2016 period, with $53,015,888 spent, compared to $49,481,560 in the previous fiscal year.

There have been smaller increases in three different year-to-date data provided by the minister, as seen below:

  • Year to 1 August 2016 $10,779,250
  • Year to 1 August 2017 $10,796,318
  • Year to 1 September 2016 $24,453,656
  • Year to 1 September 2017 $25,263,551
  • Year to 1 October 2016 $37,157,174
  • Year to 1 October 2017 $39,564,236

Last year, data from the Ministry of Justice revealed that the average gross legal aid payment rose for the sixth straight year to $120,184.33 from $111,371.72 in 2016.


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