Are You Eligible for Legal Aid in NSW? Find Out Here


If you’re facing a legal problem, you might be wondering if you’re eligible for legal aid. Legal aid in NSW, or legal aid in Australia, refers to free legal services that are funded by the government and used by people who cannot afford to pay their own legal fees. Here are some of the key things explained by criminal lawyers in NSW about whether or not you’ll get legal aid for your case.

You Have a Low Income or Are Experiencing Financial Hardship:

If you have a low income or are experiencing financial hardship, you may be eligible for legal aid in New South Wales. This means that you can get help with the cost of legal representation and advice. The amount of money you make will be determined by your assets and income. It doesn’t matter if you’re unemployed or not working: if you meet the eligibility requirements, the lawyer’s service will provide assistance to those who cannot afford it.

Merit Test:

The next step to determine if you are eligible for legal aid in New South Wales is to pass the merit test. This test is designed to assess your need for legal assistance and whether or not you have a strong case. If you pass the merit test, a defence lawyer can help you with your case.

Means Test:

To be eligible for a grant of legal assistance from Legal Aid NSW, you must pass a means test. This test assesses your financial circumstances and takes into account factors such as your income, your family situation and your assets. If you are found to be eligible, you will be able to receive legal assistance from criminal lawyers in NSW for free or at a reduced cost.

What Matters Does Legal Aid Qualify For?

• Your Offences Might Incur a Jail Sentence:

If you have been charged with an offence that may incur a jail sentence, you could be eligible for legal aid. Depending on the severity of the offence, you may be able to get legal aid to cover the cost of your defence lawyer.

• Domestic and Family Violence:

If you are a victim of domestic or family violence, you may be eligible for legal aid. Domestic and family violence includes physical, emotional, sexual, financial, and/or psychological abuse.

• Discrimination Issues:

If you have been discriminated against because of your race, religion, sex, age, or disability, you may be eligible for legal aid.

• Child Safety Is at Risk:

This includes cases where your child has been abused, neglected or is at risk of being removed from your care.

It’s important to be honest about your situation because any misrepresentation could result in losing your rights to the service you need. If you are facing court and feel like you don’t have the funds to hire a lawyer, legal aid may be able to help you. A criminal law barrister can also apply for legal aid on your behalf. Talk to a law firm if you’d like to know more.

The author is a criminal law barrister working at a renowned criminal law firm that have been assisting several clients with criminal cases. In this article, he explains the eligibility criteria for legal aid in NSW. To know more, visit

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