There are warnings more young people will end up in prison cells under proposed changes making it harder for offenders to get bail.
A select committee is hearing submissions to a Bill that'll reverse the burden of proof so that alleged offenders will have to prove why they deserve bail, rather than the Crown having to prove they should be on the streets.
It'll cover 17 to 19-year-olds, as well as drug dealers and sex offenders.
The Law Society's Sonia Cooper says it'll cost the country more, because more resources will be needed, and she questions where there is evidence the changes are needed.
Ms Cooper told the select committee it'll result in more young people being put in police cells and raised concerns it may breach international conventions.
A parliamentary committee was today told by Children's Commission policy advisor John Hancock that the changes may breach international laws.
"Whether they are in the youth justice system or they're young people who qualify for our adult justice system, it is inevitable that you're likely to get increased numbers of young people in custody and so that is going to be a fundamental issue for the committee to grapple with when trying to determine this Bill."
And Dr Andrew Butler from the Law Society says there's little evidence the law change is needed.
"As far as we're concerned, there's a very big step that you're being asked to take and ... the case for taking that step simply is not borne out by the evidence that's been put before you."
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