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NSW Caretaker Convention in effect on this site from Friday 3 March 2023.

Costs agai​​​nst Police or DPP

In certain circumstances, a court may make an order under the Criminal Procedure Act 1986 that a prosecuting authority pay professional costs to an accused person. A prosecuting authority may be either the NSW Police Force or the Director of Public Prosecutions.

If a court makes such an order, the prosecuting authority must make an application for payment to the Community Relations Unit.

Following receipt and assessment of a valid application, the Community Relations Unit will verify the order in court records and authorise payment to the registry of the relevant court, for payment to the accused person.

The Community Relations Unit can advise parties and their legal representatives whether or not:

  • an application from the prosecuting authority has been received
  • an authority to pay the amount directly to an accused person’s legal representative has been received
  • payment has been authorised and forwarded to the court registry.

Please contact us regarding the above enquiries.

We regret we are unable to:

  • authorise payment, or take any other action, without a valid application from the prosecuting authority
  • pay amounts directly to a payee (we pay the court, which forwards the funds)
  • facilitate the making of an order by a court
  • review, amend or overturn an order of a court.

Authority to pay the legal representative

A court registry will make payment directly to the accused person, unless:

  • the court ordered payment to be made instead to the legal representative, or
  • the accused person has signed a written authority that payment be made to his/her legal representative, and that authority has been received by the court registry and the Community Relations Unit.

Legal representatives who want payment to be made directly to them rather than to the defendant should ensure that the accused person’s signed written authority has been received by the Community Relations Unit by contacting us as soon as possible after the order has been made.

When costs may be awarded

Under the Criminal Procedure Act 1986 costs may be awarded:

  • by a magistrate at the conclusion of committal proceedings (sections 116-119)
  • in connection with summary proceedings in a lower court (sections 212, 213, 214 and 216)
  • in connection with proceedings in the Supeme or other higher court (sections 257C, 257D and 257F)