Quarterly service and finance reports

In 2018, the Commission resolved that Legal Aid WA would report at regular intervals on its performance. The Commission's view was that the once-a-year Annual Report was insufficient and that Legal Aid WA should report quarterly.

Western Australians have a right to clearly understand Legal Aid WA’s performance and so these reports will be publicly available on our website. We will produce these reports every quarter to provide updates on our services, outputs, financial position and priority projects. More regular release of information is consistent with broader moves across government to open data. We’re confident that more transparent information will contribute to better operational efficiency and improved engagement with stakeholders. 

It is taxpayers’ money that we use and we are an open and accountable organisation. Creating and distributing quarterly reports in this way will put Legal Aid WA at the forefront of openness and transparency in the Western Australian public sector. 

You can read the most recent quarterly report below and download copies of quarterly reports from the past two years.

infographic from current quarterly report

Priority project updates

Disaster recovery

Legal Aid WA offered free legal advice to those affected by the February bushfires. We were in regular contact with emergency coordinators and provided pamphlets and information sheets to evacuation centres. Our lawyers were available every day at the Bushfire Recovery Centre at Gidgegannup and at Wooroloo. People received advice on insurance claims, replacing fences, loss of important documents, and tenancy issues.

New duty lawyer service

On 22 February, Legal Aid WA launched a remote centralised duty lawyer service. This service will cover suburban courts on non-remand and non-mention days where we don’t have duty lawyers in attendance. This new initiative expands our duty lawyer service by providing a lawyer, based in our Perth office, who will provide remote services to those courts. The new service will provide an accused in custody with legal help.

Infobot launched

In January, we launched our Infobot chat service. This new chat bot guides people looking at our website after hours. It directs them to the legal information that they need and lists social services that could help them. Infobot operates outside of hours when our live chat operators are not working. Half of our website page views are after hours and Infobot has provided over 1,458 chats this quarter.

New Virtual Offices

Over the quarter we added six new Virtual Offices to our State-wide network. The new Virtual Offices are in Busselton, Fremantle, Kwinana, Clarkson, Rockingham and Jurien Bay. This expansion brings our network to 16 Virtual Offices. More than 1300 West Australians have accessed our Virtual Offices since we launched them in July 2019. Virtual Offices use technology to provide face-to-face advice to people in regional or remote Western Australia.

Reappointments

In January 2021, the Governor of Western Australia re-appointed Lanie Chopping, Steve Toutountzis, and Elspeth Hensler as members of the Legal Aid Commission for a second three-year term.

Financial performance

Legal Aid is forecasting a better than expected result at the end of the financial year. The forecast deficit of $3.73 million is upon the basis of accrual  accounting standards. It includes a $1.99 million accounting adjustment for leases and a $2.848 million carryover as a result of an underspend the  previous year, partially offset by expected salary savings of $1.137 million.

Financial performance Year-to-date March 2021 Forecast^ June 2021
Commonwealth funding $34,736,294 $41,961,429
State funding $44,447,540 $55,550,340
Other income $3,342,364 $3,744,935

Total revenue

$82,526,199

$101,256,705

Total expenditure

$77,569,869

$104,981,848

Surplus/Deficit*

$4,956,329

-$3,725,144

 

* The operating surplus of $4,956,329 as at 31 Mar 2021 is due to the receipt of Commonwealth funding in advance which is scheduled to be expended by the end of June 2021.

^ Forecast Actuals to the end of June are Legal Aid WA's best estimate of where were believe the Commission's finances are currently expected to be at the 2020-21 year end.

These are management figures and have not been audited.


Download quarterly reports

Disclaimer

The information displayed on this page is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. If you have a legal problem, you should see a lawyer. Legal Aid Western Australia aims to provide information that is accurate, however does not accept responsibility for any errors or omissions in the information provided on this page or incorporated into it by reference.