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How to Get Free Legal Advice in Your State (2020 Update)

How to Get Free Legal Advice in Your State (2020 Update)

Legal advice can be expensive and seem out of reach. Read this article to find out ways you can get more affordable legal advice.

19th March 2020

Obtaining professional legal advice can be expensive. However, there are ways you can receive advice for less cost, or none at all. If you have a legal problem or even need to attend court, but can’t afford the legal fees, you can sometimes get free legal aid in your State. Some of these organisations have the capacity to legally represent you in your matter, while others provide free legal advice and guide you in the right direction.

These organisations offer their services in many different areas of law including family, criminal, civil, immigration, financial, employment, consumer and many more.

Self-representation

If you’re representing yourself in your matter, then you won’t have to pay a cent for legal advice. Further, the internet means you can find a lot of useful information which may be relevant to your case online. However, self-representation is usually not recommended for those who do not have a good working knowledge of the law. This is because self-represented litigants may end up facing higher costs in the end, depending on how they conduct the case and whose favour the Judge finds in. Although self-representation is free, you’ll want the experience and knowledge of a lawyer to assist you in Court. Although you won’t be paying anything for legal advice, you will still have to bear the costs of Court filing fees and other administrative costs. 

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Free Legal Advice by State

Although self-representation may not be the way to go, you can still obtain legal advice without charge. Below is a list of some of the pro bono legal centres in your State:

ACT

  • Legal Aid ACT
  • Pro Bono Referral Schemes
  • Legal Advice Bureau
  • Community Legal Services

New South Wales

  • Legal Aid NSW
  • Community Legal Centres NSW
  • Law Society of NSW Pro Bono Scheme
  • Financial Counsellors’ Association of NSW Inc

Northern Territory

  • Legal Aid NT
  • Community Legal Centres
  • Pro Bono Referral Schemes

Queensland

  • Legal Aid QLD
  • Community Legal Centres QLD
  • Pro Bono Referral Schemes
  • Youth Advocacy Centres

South Australia

  • Legal Aid SA
  • Community Legal Centres
  • Justice Net

Tasmania

  • Legal Aid TAS
  • Community Legal Centres
  • Pro Bono Referral Schemes

Victoria

  • Legal Aid VIC
  • Federation of Community Legal Centres Victoria
  • Victims Support Agency

Western Australia

  • Legal Aid WA
  • Community Legal Centres
  • Pro Bono Referral Schemes

Other Pro Bono Schemes

Aside from these legal centres, some large law firms run pro bono schemes. However, you may have to fulfil certain criteria in order to be eligible. You can visit the law society website of your State or Territory for further information.

Other ways of cutting your legal costs

Legal advice can be costly due to how quickly fees can escalate. This especially the case where you’re charged on an hourly basis. When this happens, costs can quickly rise. Another way to save money on your legal fees is to opt to use lawyers who will charge on you on a fixed-fee basis. That way, you’ll know exactly what you have to pay so there are no nasty surprises down the track.

Don’t know where to start? Contact us on 1800 529 728 to learn more about customising legal documents and obtaining a fixed-fee quote from Australia’s largest lawyer marketplace.

Author
Dominic Woolrych

Dominic is the CEO of Lawpath, dedicating his days to making legal easier, faster and more accessible to businesses. Dominic is a recognised thought-leader in Australian legal disruption, and was recognised as a winner of the 2015 Australian Legal Innovation Index.