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Annual Report 2021 - 2022

A snapshot of our services

We provided a range of services to help people in NSW to know, defend, and assert their rights.

Legal advice and assistance

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We offer free, targeted legal advice across many areas of law at our 25 offices, two satellite offices and advice clinics offered primarily over the telephone covering the whole state. In some circumstances, our lawyers will also provide minor assistance by writing a letter or helping clients fill out court documents.

Extended legal assistance was introduced in 2017–2018 with the aim of achieving early legal resolution for people with multiple legal problems, or vulnerable people who had legal problems in priority areas of law.

Legal representation

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Legal Aid NSW represents eligible clients in criminal law, family law and civil law matters. In most cases, our legal representation services are means tested, and most people who receive a grant of legal aid will be required to pay a contribution towards their grant of aid.

On-the-spot help in courts and tribunals

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We make duty lawyers available in courts and tribunals throughout NSW to provide free legal help and representation to eligible clients.

Family dispute resolution

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We helped parties reach an agreement in 75%* of conferences.

Legal Aid NSW is the largest provider of legally assisted dispute resolution mediations in Australia. We provide family dispute resolution services to help separating families resolve disputes, such as parenting, adoption or property matters early on in proceedings and without the need to go to court.

*This includes family law conferences in both NSW and Commonwealth jurisdictions. The Commonwealth-only settlement rate was 74.7%. The percentage of Commonwealth-only matters was 98%.

Hotline for young people

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The Legal Aid NSW Youth Hotline provides legal advice, minor assistance, and information to young people aged under 18. Lawyers are available to answer calls until midnight on weekdays and through the night on weekends and public holidays.

Resources and community legal education

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Provision of resources and our community legal education sessions were impacted by COVID-19.

*This number does not include Legal Aid NSW application forms, which have been included in this figure in previous years.