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Thursday, 4 August 1921

Senator PEARCE - The answers are - 1-5. The Army Legal Department will consist of officers serving in the Citizen Forces not exceeding in number seven lieutenant-colonels, fifteen majors, and eighteen captains distributed throughout the Commonwealth attached to the various formations. The duties will extend to an equivalent of, approximately, sixteen days a year, which is the ordinary duration of the annual training of the Citizen Forces. Each member will receive the ordinary Citizen Force pay of his rank for not more than sixteen days each year, namely, lieutenant-colonel £30, major £24, and captain £18, on the satisfactory performance of duty. The total annual expenditure will not exceed £894.

The duties of members of the legal section will be instructional, advisory, and executive. They will be required to instruct officers of the Forces in military law and their duties in the administration of discipline - instruction of great importance, the lack of which in the past was greatly felt during the earlier period of the late war.

The members of the legal section will also instruct and advise in matters relating to the administration of the Act and regulations especially in regard to the institution of proceedings under the Act in civil Courts for offences by defaulting trainees. They will also advise formation commanders and other convening and confirming authorities on legal questions affecting courts martial.

6.   It is difficult to submit an estimate, but it is not anticipated that the numbers will be large. The duties in connexion with courts martial, however, will form only a small portion of the duties of a legal staff officer, the greater portion of the latter being of an instructional and advisory nature.

7.   Having in view the low expenditure entailed and the very great benefits which it is anticipated will be obtained from the system, it is not proposed to delay the establishment of the Army legal section.

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