Going to court as a child

A person who has turned 18 years of age is considered an adult under the Youth Justice Act 1992.

However, an 18 year old may be dealt with as a child if the offence they’re charged with was committed before they turned 18.

Protecting child offender identity

The Youth Justice Act 1992 outlines when identifying information may be published, subject to contrary orders of the court. You should get legal advice if you are unsure whether you can publish information.

Generally, identifying information about a child (either under the Youth Justice Act 1992, or involving adoption or child protection matters) cannot be published unless a court order allows it.

Getting legal representation

Children have access to legal and other support services, including services concerned with advocacy and interpreter services.

Respondent parents in child protection proceedings have access to duty lawyers on the day of court. They can also obtain legal advice by contacting Legal Aid Queensland, the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Service or a private solicitor before attending court.

Applying for bail

When a child offender has been taken into custody in connection with an offence, the police officer must decide whether to release the child or keep them in custody.

They may release the child without bail or grant bail.

If the police officer has kept the child in custody, they must be brought promptly before the Childrens Court.

More information

Also see the following Queensland Government information: