2013 Legal Aid Department Annual Report
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Vision, Mission & Values
Departmental Strategic Plan
Legal Aid Services
Case of Public Interest or Concern
Customer Services
Publicity Programmes
Organisation, Administration and Staffing
  Chapter 1  
Departmental Strategic Plan

The Department's strategic plan sets out our objectives and describes how the objectives can be achieved. The strategic plan provides a rational basis upon which priorities are determined and is regularly updated to ensure that resources are well targeted and used effectively having regard to the changing needs of society.

The Department's strategic plan can also be viewed at the Department's website.

(Rear row from left)
Mr Francis Chan Wan-kit, Ms Juliana Chan Miu-kuen, Ms Tse Sze-fong, Miss Linda Ng Wing-ping, Ms Doris Lui Wai-lan, Mrs Christina Hadiwibawa Cheung Ying-man, Miss Ada Wong Yiu-ming, Mr Steve Wong Yiu-fai

(Front row from left)
Ms Sherman Cheung Suk-ying, Ms Mo Yuk-wah, Mr Allan Chan Wing-cho, Mr Thomas Edward Kwong, Ms Alice Chung Yee-ling, Mr Chris Chong Yan-tung, Ms Juliana Chan Oi-yung
Implementation of the Strategic Plan in 2013

Declaration System for Legal Aid Application

As a measure to combat the problem of nomination of lawyers by aided clients being influenced by improper touting activities, a new "Declaration System" was introduced in September 2013. Under the System, the nomination form to be completed by the aided clients was revised to enhance their awareness of their right to select lawyers of their choice and not to agree to share damages / costs with any third party including the nominated lawyers. As for assigned lawyers, the declaration was incorporated into the assignment letter as one of the assignment condition. Assigned lawyers are asked to return the case to the Department for re-assignment if they cannot accept this new condition of assignment.


Information System

Based on the Framework for Electronic Information Management ("EIM") strategy issued by the government, the Department commenced the development of its Information Management Foundation in 2012. In 2013, the Department conducted consultancy study on the Metadata Standards for Recordkeeping, Content and Knowledge Management. The aim was to offer consistent structures and descriptive standards to manage electronic information and enable our staff to retrieve and re-use those information more effectively. Since the standards are government-wide, it would also enhance efficiency in the exchange of electronic information between the Department and other government departments and bureaux. Upon the completion of the study, the Department will implement another EIM initiative, namely the development of Central Repository and Collaborative Workspace, which provides a collaborative environment across divisions of the Department. Furthermore, funding application for the implementation of Content Management / Records Management Integration as well as Electronic Recordkeeping System had been submitted pending approval.

In order to encourage more frequent usage of the Legal Aid Electronic Portal, the Department had from March 2013 replaced the use of digital certificate requirements with user ID and personal password for panel lawyers to submit e-reports and panel member data update e-forms. We had also conducted a review on the user interface of the Portal to make it more user-friendly. The review's finding would be implemented in 2014.


Customer Services

To widen public awareness of criminal legal aid services, the leaflet on "How to Apply Legal Aid in Criminal Cases" was delivered to the Duty Lawyer Service in July 2013 for distribution at the Court Liaison Offices in seven Magistrates' Courts.



The Department continued to organize various activities to promote the public's awareness and understanding of legal aid services. In 2013, professional officers of the Department delivered talks to a non-government organization serving ethnic minorities, a secondary school and a university on the services provided by the Department.


Following the relocation of the Information & Application Services Unit for civil applications from the 24/F to the 25/F of Queensway Government Offices, the office areas of the Application and Processing Division on 24/F were fully renovated, providing our staff with a more comfortable and spacious working environment. Four new interview rooms were also added to facilitate our staff to meet the applicants and aided persons.

The Department continued to expand its book collection on diverse topics such as healthy lifestyle, positive thinking, stress management, personal development etc. Furthermore, to promote the well-being of staff and cultivate a balanced work life, the Department also organized a series of workshops on Relieving Work Stress with Acupressure Therapy. All these were well received by our staff.

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