The Queensland Government is confident delaying the introduction of voluntary assisted dying legislation will not have a significant impact on when new laws will be active in the state.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk flagged introducing assisted dying legislation early next year if Labor won the election.
However, on Monday Attorney-General Shannon Fentiman outlined the delayed time-frame, with the Queensland Law Reform Commission delivering a draft bill in May and legislation introduced before June.
Ms Fentiman said the QLRC had asked for more time to deliver its final report.
The delay has been put down to caretaker arrangements disrupting the public consultation process.
"Although a bill is currently before the Tasmanian Parliament, Victoria and Western Australia are the only Australian states to have enacted VAD laws and we need to make sure the proposed legislation is workable in a Queensland context," she said.
Presuming the laws pass, the government said a shorter implementation time of 15 months would "ensure there is no delay in Queenslanders being able to have a choice on voluntary assisted dying".
"We will take into account this additional time in the drafting of the bill when we consider an implementation timeframe, in effect, ensuring that these new laws, if they are passed by the parliament, will be effective and available to Queenslanders on the same timeframe," acting premier Steven Miles said.
In supporting the delay, chair of the Clem Jones Trust, David Muir, said it was a matter of common sense given the QLRC request.
"This will be the first time that a bill will have been debated in our parliament, so this is a chance for Queensland to get it right the first time," he said.
"For those who are terminally ill, my message today would be that the acceleration of the implementation stage will not impact on the operation of the laws that we hope will be passed in the parliament next year."
The QLRC released the VAD laws consultation paper on 16 October, with submissions closing on 27 November.
Prior to this a parliamentary committee held 41 hearings and received 4729 submissions as part of an inquiry into voluntary assisted dying.
Australian Associated Press
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