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Other legal matters

Government benefits and allowances

  1. Government benefits and pension

    Legal aid may be available to dispute a decision about your pension, social security benefit or other social security allowance at the Administrative Appeals Tribunal.

    Eligibility requirements:

    Legal Aid NSW will assess your income and assets.

    AND

    Legal Aid NSW will make an assessment on the nature of your legal problem and the prospects of success.

    AND

    The case is particularly complicated.

    AND

    It would be unreasonable to expect you to represent yourself due to a special circumstance such as physical or intellectual disability, language or literacy limitations, or location.

  2. National disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)

    Legal aid may be available to review a decision relating to your benefits under the NDIS at the Administrative Appeals Tribunal

    Eligibility requirements:

    Legal Aid NSW will make an assessment on the nature of your legal problem and the prospects of success

    AND

    Legal representation will benefit you as well as the wider community

    AND

    You have already lodged an appeal application with the AAT.

  3. War veterans' entitlements

    Legal aid may be available to war veterans and their dependants to dispute a decision about entitlements at the Administrative Appeals Tribunal.

    Eligibility requirements:

    Legal Aid NSW will make an assessment on the nature of your legal problem and the prospects of success.

Migration

  1. Migration

    Legal aid may be available to:

    • Challenge the lawfulness of your immigration detention.
    • Appeal a decision to cancel your permanent visa if it cancelled on character grounds and there are human rights issues involved.
    • Apply for the following visas:

    Partner visa for applicants eligible for an exemption under the family violence, child of the relationship or death of a sponsor provisions.

    Or

    XA-866 onshore protection visas.

    Eligibility requirements:

    Legal Aid NSW will assess your income and assets.

    AND

    Legal Aid NSW will make an assessment on the nature of your legal problem and the prospects of success.

Consumer protection

  1. Consumer protection

    Legal aid may be available to consumers for matters including unfair insurance contracts, unfair mortgage agreements and other consumer credit and debt matters.

    Eligibility requirements:

    Legal Aid NSW will assess your income and assets.

    AND

    Legal Aid NSW will make an assessment based on the nature of your legal problem and the prospects of success.

    AND

    The public interest would be advanced in assisting you with the matter.

Discrimination

  1. Discrimination

    Legal aid may be available for discrimination proceedings if you have experienced discrimination in the education system, during the provision of goods and services or during the provision of accommodation.

    Eligibility requirements:

    Legal Aid NSW will assess your income and assets.

    AND

    Legal Aid NSW will make an assessment based on the nature of your legal problem and the prospects of success.

    For discrimination in the workplace, see Employment.

Employment

  1. Employment

    Legal aid may be available to an employee in employment law matters including unfair dismissals, recovery of entitlements, review of unfair contracts and general protections.

    Eligibility requirements:

    Legal Aid NSW will assess your income and assets.

    AND

    Legal Aid NSW will make an assessment based on the nature of your legal problem and the prospects of success.

    AND

    Legal Aid NSW will consider if you face hardship, including financial and personal disadvantage.

Tenancy and housing

  1. Tenancy and housing

    Legal aid is not available to a landlord for disputes with a tenant, or a home-owner for building disputes. Please visit the NSW Fair Trading website https://www.fairtrading.nsw.gov.au/ or contact them on 13 32 20.

    Legal aid may be available to a tenant in matters including evictions and disputes between tenant and landlord.

    Legal aid may be available to a home-owner where there is a likelihood that the home-owner will lose their home as a result of legal proceedings.

    Eligibility requirements:

    Legal Aid NSW will assess your income and assets.

    AND

    Legal Aid NSW will make an assessment based on the nature of your legal problem and the prospects of success.

Breach of civil liberties

  1. Breach of civil liberties

    Legal aid may be available if you have had your civil liberties breached by a person in a position of authority such as a police officer, prison officer, immigration detention officer, a teacher, a youth worker or other carer. A breach of civil liberties might include an unlawful search, arrest or detainment, threats, or being touched or physically handled.

    Eligibility requirements:

    Legal Aid NSW will assess your income and assets.

    AND

    Legal Aid NSW will make an assessment based on the nature of your legal problem and the prospects of success.

Guardianship and mental capacity

  1. Mental health

    Legal aid is available to people who have been involuntarily admitted to hospital and brought before the Mental Health Review Tribunal. Legal aid may also be available for other matters including Community Treatment Orders, review of decisions made by the NSW Trustee or Public Guardian and appeals to the Supreme Court. Please contact the Mental Health Advocacy Service on 02 9745 4277 for more information.

  2. Guardianship disputes

    Legal aid may be available for matters in the Guardianship Division of the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal.

    Eligibility requirements:

    The Tribunal has granted leave for the person to be represented.

    AND

    Legal Aid NSW will make an assessment based on the nature of your legal problem and the prospects of success.

  3. Guardianship orders and financial management orders

    Legal aid may be available to apply for, revoke, or appeal a decision relating to, a guardianship order or financial management order.

    Eligibility requirements:

    Legal Aid NSW will make an assessment based on the nature of your legal problem and the prospects of success.

Medical treatment and other health matters

  1. Drug and alcohol treatment

    Legal aid may be available to you if you are a dependent person in proceedings relating to a review or an extension of your dependency certificate.

    Legal Aid NSW does not apply eligibility criteria to these matters.

  2. Public health orders

    Legal aid may be available to defend or review an application for a public health order against you.

    Eligibility requirements:

    Legal Aid NSW will assess your income and assets.

    AND

    Legal Aid NSW will make an assessment based on the nature of your legal problem and the prospects of success.

Human rights

  1. Human rights

    Legal aid may be available in matters that are of public interest or which raise significant issues of human rights.

    Eligibility requirements:

    Legal Aid NSW will assess your income and assets.

    AND

    Legal Aid NSW will make an assessment based on the nature of your legal problem and the prospects of success.

Coronial Inquests

Legal aid may be available for matters relating to a coronial inquest in limited circumstances. Please contact the Coronial Inquest Unit on 1300 888 529 for more information.

Working with Children Checks

  1. Working with Children Checks

    Legal aid may be available to review a decision to refuse or disqualify a Working with Children Check at the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal.

    Eligibility requirements:

    Your employment or potential employment is affected by the decision

    OR

    You are an authorised carer

    OR

    There are exceptional circumstances

    AND

    Legal Aid NSW will assess your income and assets.

    AND

    Legal Aid NSW will make an assessment based on the nature of your legal problem and the prospects of success.

Sexual Assault Communications Privilege

The Sexual Assault Communications Privilege Service (SACPS) is a victims' legal service that helps protect the privacy of counselling notes and other confidential therapeutic records in criminal proceedings involving sexual offences. This service provides legal advice and representation to victims of sexual assault and other "protected confiders", including psychologists, psychiatrists and counsellors, who want to prevent or restrict the disclosure of sensitive sexual assault communications in court.

Please contact us on 02 9219 5888 for more information.

Proceeds of crime

  1. Proceeds of crime

    Legal aid may be available to you if your property is covered by a restraining order under the Proceeds of Crime Act (Cth) 2002.

    Eligibility requirements:

    Legal Aid NSW will assess your income and assets.

    AND

    Legal Aid NSW will make an assessment based on the nature of your legal problem and the prospects of success.

    Legal aid is not available for matters relating to the NSW Confiscation of Proceeds of Crime Act 1989.

Do you have a fine?

Legal aid is usually not available to defend fines in courts or tribunals. If you have a fine, please visit the FineFixer website at https://nsw.finefixer.org.au/. The FineFixer tool has useful information about how to deal with your fines problem.

Other matters that legal aid is not available for

  1. Professional negligence

    Legal aid is not available to bring an action against a professional for professional negligence. You can get advice from a private lawyer by calling the Law Society of NSW Solicitor Referral Service on 1800 422 713.

  2. Non-consumer credit and debt matters

    Legal aid is not available for matters relating to credit and debt between two individuals or between companies. You can get advice from a private lawyer by calling the Law Society of NSW Solicitor Referral Service on 1800 422 713.

  3. Private contract disputes

    Legal aid may be available for matters involving a consumer contract and some employment contract disputes, but it is not available for private or commercial contractual disputes.  You can get advice from a private lawyer by calling the Law Society of NSW Solicitor Referral Service on 1800 422 713.

  4. Privacy

    Legal aid is not available for privacy disputes relating to a breach of privacy (including data, and personal information). You can get advice from a private lawyer by calling the Law Society of NSW Solicitor Referral Service on 1800 422 713.

  5. Defamation

    Legal aid is not available for defamation cases. You can get advice from a private lawyer by calling the Law Society of NSW Solicitor Referral Service on 1800 422 713.

  6. Medical negligence

    Legal aid is not available to sue a medical professional for negligence. You can get advice from a private lawyer by calling the Law Society of NSW Solicitor Referral Service on 1800 422 713.

  7. Building disputes

    Legal aid is not available for disputes relating to building contracts or building works. You can visit the NSW Fair Trading website https://www.fairtrading.nsw.gov.au/ or contact them on 13 32 20. You can also get advice from a private lawyer by calling the Law Society of NSW Solicitor Referral Service on 1800 422 713.

  8. Neighbour disputes

    Legal aid is generally not available for disputes between neighbours about dividing fences, trees and animals. You can get advice from a private lawyer by calling the Law Society of NSW Solicitor Referral Service on 1800 422 713 or a Community Legal Centre on 1300 888 529.

  9. Environment and planning disputes

    Legal aid is not available for planning and environmental law disputes. You can get advice from a private lawyer by calling the Law Society of NSW Solicitor Referral Service on 1800 422 713, or the Environmental Defender's Office on 1800 626 239.

  10. Personal injury

    Legal aid is generally not available for personal injury cases including workers compensation, motor accident injuries, medical negligence or public liability claims. You can get advice from a private lawyer by calling the Law Society of NSW Solicitor Referral Service on 1800 422 713.

  11. Property damage by a motor vehicle

    Legal aid is not available to bring a claim relating to property damage resulting from a motor vehicle accident.  You can get advice from a private lawyer by calling the Law Society of NSW Solicitor Referral Service on 1800 422 713.

  12. Wills and estates

    Legal aid does not draft wills or other life documentation such as Powers of Attorney or Enduing Guardians. Legal aid is also not available in contested estates matters unless you are likely to lose your home. You can get advice from a private lawyer by calling the Law Society of NSW Solicitor Referral Service on 1800 422 713.

  13. Sale and purchase of real property

    Legal aid does not offer conveyancing or other legal services relating to the sale or purchase of real property. You should get advice from a private lawyer. You can contact the Law Society of NSW's Solicitor Referral Service on 02 9926 0300 or 1800 422 713.

  14. Bankruptcy

    Legal Aid is not available for bankruptcy cases. You may be able to get help from the Law Society of NSW's Pro Bono Scheme. Contact them on 02 9926 0364. Alternatively you can get advice from a private lawyer by calling the Law Society of NSW Solicitor Referral Service on 1800 422 713.

  15. Victims compensation or restitution cases

    Legal aid is not available to make Victims Compensation applications or to defend Victims Restitution Orders in courts or tribunals. You can contact a Community Legal Centre on 1300 888 529 or www.victimsservices.justice.nsw.gov.au or 1800 633 063. You can also get advice from a private lawyer by calling the Law Society of NSW Solicitor Referral Service on 1800 422 713.