See a lawyer
See a lawyer
We have lawyers who give free legal advice on a range of matters to people who need it most.
Who can see a lawyer
Our main focus is on people who:
- can’t afford a private lawyer
- have an intellectual disability, an acquired brain injury or mental illness
- are in a psychiatric in-patient unit
- are experiencing or at risk of homelessness
- are a child or young person going to the Children’s Court
- can’t speak, read or write well in English
- are Indigenous Australians
- are at court for a family violence matter or are at risk of family violence
- are in custody or facing a serious penalty.
A serious penalty is where there is a real risk that a person will:
- go to jail
- be put on a community corrections order
- get a substantial fine.
The penalty can depend on your prior criminal record.
Legal problems we can help you with
We give free legal advice on a range of matters, including:
- criminal matters, including some serious traffic offences
- family breakdown matters
- child protection
- child support
- family violence
- discrimination and sexual harassment
- Centrelink and social security law
- debt recovery for people with debt
- guardianship and administration matters at the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal
- infringement fines – if you have special circumstances which have contributed to you getting infringement notices
- matters before the Mental Health Tribunal
- refugee and immigration matters
- some tenancy matters for tenants only
- Veterans’ Affairs matters
- compensation claims for victims of crime.
Contact our Legal Help phoneline to find out if we can help you.
Legal problems we don’t give advice about
There are some things we don’t give legal advice about. They include:
- business and commercial matters
- building, buying and selling houses and land
- intellectual property
- pay disputes
- work injuries
- Wills and deceased estates.
How we can help
Depending on your circumstances, our lawyers may be able to:
- give you free legal advice – in person, by video conference or over the phone
- help you if you are at court without a lawyer
- run your case, which may include representing you in court.
We may also be able to refer you to other services for help.
We do not provide legal advice by email or online.
Access to our services
If you need assistance accessing any of our services, please contact us.
If you would like an interpreter we can arrange this for you for free. See Get help in your own language.
We can also arrange Auslan interpreters and assistance via relay services if required.
Preparing to talk to a lawyer
To make the best use of the your time with a lawyer it helps to be prepared. Make sure you bring:
- any documents relating to your legal problem, such as police statements, court papers, letters, fines, copies of emails or medical reports
- a list of questions
- your health care card
- proof of your income.
It may also be useful for you to look at Find legal answers to get some basic information about your legal problem.