Communities and Justice

Review of the Minimum Age of Criminal Responsibility

Currently, the age of criminal responsibility is 10 years of age as legislated in each state, territory and the Commonwealth. For the purpose of legal proceedings, this requirement is accompanied by the presumption of doli incapax that children aged 10 to under 14 years are criminally incapable unless it can be proven otherwise.

The Council of Attorneys-General (CAG) Working Group is reviewing the age of criminal responsibility and make recommendations to CAG in that regard. 

The Working Group is chaired by the Department of Justice, Western Australia, and includes representation from NSW, along with each other state, territory and the Commonwealth Government.

At its meeting on 29 November 2019, CAG noted strong stakeholder interest in the issue, and the importance of the views, knowledge and expertise of interested stakeholders and individuals. CAG agreed that the Working Group undertake targeted and public consultation, and provide a report back to CAG in 2020. 

Submissions invited

On behalf of the Working Group, the Department of Justice, Western Australia, has published a series of consultation questions on its website.

Instructions for making a submission are also provided on the site

The closing date for submissions is Friday 28 February 2020

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