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Policy Bulletin 2023 / 3 Extended Legal Assistance - Respect at Work

7 Mar 2023

The Legal Aid NSW CEO has approved expanding the Extended Legal Assistance (ELA) service to include assistance to people experiencing sexual harassment and discrimination at work.


In July 2018, the Legal Aid NSW Board approved the implementation of a new Service Type, Extended Legal Assistance (ELA). ELA is an extended legal service which includes taking carriage of a matter (or multiple matters) in an ongoing, representative capacity, but due to the nature of the matters/s it does not proceed to a court or tribunal, or the lawyer is not required to appear before a court or tribunal. ELA is provided only on an inhouse basis.

In 2022, Legal Aid NSW received National Legal Assistance Partnership funding to establish the Respect at Work Legal Service (RAWLS) to provide legal advice, assistance and representation services to people who have experienced discrimination or sexual harassment at work. The RAWLS is a trauma informed service that will also provide Community Legal Education.

What is the new ELA?

ELA is now available to assist people who have experienced sexual harassment or unlawful discrimination at work to make complaints to an employer, the Australian Human Rights Commission and Anti-Discrimination NSW, and to make applications to the Fair Work Commission.

Examples of Extended Legal Assistance available include:

  • Representing a worker in negotiations to resolve workplace sexual harassment and/or discrimination.
  • Making an application for stop sexual harassment orders at the Fair Work Commission.
  • Making Fair Work Commission claims about general protections and representation in disputes about flexible work and stand down involving unlawful discrimination.
  • Making a complaint and representing a worker in conciliation at the Australian Human Rights Commission and Anti-Discrimination NSW.

For details of the policy, see Policy Online, Extended Legal Assistance, Civil – core areas of Legal Aid Work, #16 Respect at Work Legal Service: Civil - core areas of legal aid work - Legal Aid NSW

Commencement date

The change applies to applications determined on or after 7 March 2023.

Contact for further information

Anna Coffey, Senior Solicitor, Client Eligibility Unit at anna.coffey@legalaid.nsw.gov.au.