The DPP undertakes the conduct of all civil litigation on behalf of the State and its agencies. This means that if the State of Tasmania wishes to take legal action against an individual, corporation or other entity, the DPP will conduct the litigation on its behalf. Equally, if the State of Tasmania has legal action taken against it, the DPP acts on behalf of the State of Tasmania and defends the State against the claim.
In all of these instances, the relevant Government agency provides the DPP with instructions setting out what action it wishes the DPP to take on its behalf. Such instructions are formulated after the agency has received legal advice from the DPP.
In a limited range of circumstances, the DPP may also represent State servants who have had legal action taken against them as a consequence of their employment as a State servant.
The major areas of civil law work are workers' compensation claims, medical negligence claims, anti-discrimination and administrative law matters.