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Annual Report 2021 - 2022

Financial overview

Financial summary

Our net financial result was a surplus of $13.5 million.

  2020–21 ($M) 2021–22 ($M) Change %
Operating revenue 393.0 438.9 11.7%
Operating expenses 404.7 426.0 5.3%
Total assets 137.5 87.8 -36.1%
Total liabilities 115.7 52.5 -54.6%
Surplus (deficit) (11.3) 13.5 219.5%
Net equity 21.8 35.3 61.9%)


Legal Aid NSW receives its government funding as a grant from the NSW Department of Communities and Justice. The grant comprises income from the NSW Government and the Commonwealth Government. In addition, income is received from the Public Purpose Fund and client contributions.

Total income for 2021–2022 was $438.9 million and expenditure was $426 million.

Key developments

Our financial result was a surplus of $13.5 million, which is $16.7 million more than our budgeted deficit of $3.2 million.
We ended the year with net equity of $35.3 million. Payments of $146 million were made to private lawyers, who provide legal aid services to our clients in partnership with Legal Aid NSW. These payments include disbursements for other professional services.

Where our money came from ($M)

Funding received in 2021–22($M)
State appropriation including Commonwealth funding provided under the National Partnership Agreement 340.7
Public Purpose Fund grant 21.0
Other grants 56.5
Acceptance by the Crown Entity of employees’ benefits and other liabilities 4.2
Other sources 16.5

How we spent our money ($M)

Funding spent in 2021–22($M)
Employee-related expenses 161.0
External legal services 146.0
Grants and subsidies 77.3
Other 41.7

How we spent our money by program ($M)

Funding spent in 2021–22($M)
Criminal law 199.9
Family law 97.4
Civil law 43.8
Community partnerships 84.9