Assessment orders

Graphs

Admissions to temporary assessment orders, Queensland, 2006-07 to 2010-11 Admissions to temporary assessment orders, Queensland, 2015-16 to 2019-20

YearAll children
2006-07 716
2007-08 1407
2008-09 1612
2009-10 1223
2010-11 1198

Admissions to court assessment orders, Queensland, 2006-07 to 2010-11 Admissions to court assessment orders, Queensland, 2015-16 to 2019-20

YearAll children
2006-07 1537
2007-08 1551
2008-09 1709
2009-10 1232
2010-11 1106

Tables

DescriptionAnnualQuarterly
AO.1: Admissions to assessment orders, by type of order and region, Queensland Excel (XLSX, 16 KB) Excel (CSV, 4 KB) Excel (XLSX, 19 KB) Excel (CSV, 3 KB)

What are assessment orders?

Assessment orders authorise actions during the investigation and assessment process where the consent of the parents has not been able to be obtained.

There are two types of assessment orders:

  • Temporary Assessment Orders (TAO) - temporary assessment orders are made to authorise actions necessary as part of an investigation to assess whether a child is in need of protection, if the consent of the parents has not been able to be obtained or it is not practicable to take steps to obtain consent.  TAOs can authorise a number of actions including the authority to temporarily take a child into the custody of the chief executive (Director-General) of the department, however, guardianship remains with the child's parents. A TAO remains in effect for up to three business days from midnight on the date it was made and can only be extended once, for one business day, if the magistrate is satisfied that the department will apply for a court assessment order or the Director of Child Protection Litigation will apply for a child protection order within the extended time period.
  • Court Assessment Order (CAO) - a court assessment order is made to authorise actions necessary as part of an investigation to assess whether a child is a child in need of protection, if the parents will not consent to the actions required to complete an investigation or it is not practicable to get their consent and more than three business days is necessary to complete the investigation and assessment. CAOs can authorise a number of actions such as medical examination or treatment; contact with the child; directing a parent not to have contact; and entry to a place.  Guardianship (long term decision making) remains with the child's parents. CAOs are granted for a maximum of 28 days, however the Child Protection Act 1999 allows for one extension of a further 28 days.

Why this topic is important

A thorough investigation and assessment is critical in determining whether a child is in need of protection.

The department's response to all notifications is to conduct an investigation and assessment. When this cannot occur with parental consent, assessment orders enable the department to proceed.

During 2019-20, there were 3,801 admissions to assessment orders, comprising 1,741 admissions to TAOs and 2,060 admissions to CAOs. This is an increase of 19.7 per cent since 2018-19 where there were 3,176 admissions to assessment orders, comprising 1,471 admissions to TAOs and 1,705 admissions to CAOs.