In a criminal trial, the trial judge gives the jury directions to help the jury to decide whether the accused is guilty or not guilty.
The department has prepared a report on reforms to the law of jury directions. The report provides information on:
- the problems with existing jury directions
- the content of the reforms
- how the reforms are intended to work.
This report consolidates and updates material contained in the department’s earlier reports:
It is designed to explain the application of the proposed Jury Directions and Other Acts Amendment Bill 2017 (the Bill) (if enacted) by providing detailed information on how the reforms were developed and their intent.
The reforms to jury directions have been developed with the assistance of an expert advisory group, which includes high-level representatives from Victoria's courts, Office of Public Prosecutions, Victoria Legal Aid, the Victorian Bar, the Judicial College of Victoria, and academics with expertise in jury research.
If enacted, the provisions in the Bill will be incorporated into the Jury Directions Act 2015. A copy of the Act is available on the Victorian Legislation and Parliamentary Documents website .