Inquiry into Powers of Attorney

Content and News

On 4 December 2008 the Legislative Assembly gave the Law Reform Committee terms of reference to conduct an Inquiry into powers of attorney. Powers of attorney are legal documents that help people plan for future financial, health and lifestyle needs. They allow a person (called a 'principal') to choose someone (a 'representative') to make decisions on his or her behalf. They are a useful way to plan for future care if a person becomes unable to make decisions for him or herself, for example because of an accident or illness.

The Committee completed its inquiry in August 2010.

Final report

The final report for the Inquiry into powers of attorney was tabled in Parliament on 31 August 2010.

cover for powers of attorney report

The report is now available for download as a pdf pdf file 4.77 Mb.

The report contains 90 recommendations aimed at streamlining and simplifying power of attorney documents. The report strikes a balance between providing better safeguards against abuse and ensuring that power of attorney documents remain easy to use.

The Committee's Chair, Mr Johan Scheffer MLC, issued a media release on 31 August 2010.

The Government Response to the Committee's report was tabled in Parliament on 10 February 2011 and is available for download as a pdf pdf file 156.92 Kb.

Other evidence

The Law Reform Committee held five public hearings between October 2009 and March 2010. Transcripts of evidence from the public hearings can be found on the transcripts page. The Committee also received 75 written submissions. Submissions accepted by the Committee can be viewed on the submissions page.

If you have any questions relating to the inquiry, please contact the Committee on (03) 8682 2851 or

Last Updated on Tuesday, 08 March 2011