The audit found that Victoria Legal Aid (VLA)
is performing its role delivering legal aid services across
Victoria, and prioritising the most vulnerable people based on a
sound understanding of demand drivers and funding risks.
VLA is providing its services in a challenging
environment of increased demand and with fixed funding that is
largely based on demand levels from 2008.
Determining the extent to which VLA is
providing services effectively, efficiently and economically is
constrained, however, by its performance monitoring framework,
which does not clearly inform VLA's board or the public about how
well it is achieving its statutory objectives.
Increased demand has resulted in VLA
tightening eligibility for its more intensive and costly legal
services in order to remain financially sustainable. This has had
the effect of reducing the number of people who are eligible for
legal representation, while moving more people to less intensive
services. While these actions are consistent with VLA's legal
obligations, this has implications for access to justice.
There are gaps in some areas of its service delivery, and VLA is
actively addressing these gaps to improve services.