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Legal Aid

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Victoria Legal Aid

www.legalaid.vic.gov.au/ Telephone Advice City (03) 9269 0120 Telephone Advice Country 1800 677 402

350 Queen St
Melbourne Vic 3000

GPO Box 4380
Melbourne Vic 3001

Phone: (03) 9269 0234
Country callers: 1800 677 402

Victoria 1 legal aid litigation funding pro bono victoria legal aid

Applying for Legal Aid

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Litigation Funds

Litigation funds operate by lending you the money required for your case as it progresses. They do not cover any costs that may be awarded against you. They either receive a proportion of anything that you win in your case or they charge you an interest rate that reflects the risks involved for them.

Law Society

Law Institute of Victoria Law Aid is designed to improve access to justice in Victoria for members of the public who are unable to afford the cost of civil litigation.
Law Aid is available only for civil litigation. The types of civil litigation, which will be funded, include:

  • A substantial personal injury claim.
  • Claims against institutions involving oppressive behaviour.
  • Loss or destruction of property claims.
  • Professional negligence claims.
  • Wills and estate claims.

It is not available for criminal matters or family law matters.

Private Funding

There are private companies that will "back" similar cases to the Law Society, and also Family and De Facto matters. See your solicitor to see if they have arrangements with any of these companies.

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Pro Bono Publico

This is a phrase derived from Latin meaning "for the public good." It describes professional work undertaken by lawyers voluntarily and without payment, as a public service. Unlike traditional volunteerism, pro bono service leverages the specific skills of professionals to provide services to those who are unable to afford them.

Justice COnnect facilitates pro bono legal assistance between the community and the private legal profession. It is available to both individuals and not-for-profit community organisations.

"Free" First Interview

Never choose a lawyer on the basis of a "Free First Interview". There is little cost in seeing a solicitor of your choice to find out if you have a case worth pursuing or whether it is the sort of case that you should handle yourself.

If you have a serious case, the cost of the first interview is "the tip of the iceberg".

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No Win No Fee

Many personal injury lawyers offer "No Win - No Charge" or "No Win, No Fee" legal services when they believe that a case is reasonably likely to be successful.

It is not a free service. When a successful outcome is achieved (i.e. you are awarded money or perhaps another benefit of some kind), a success fee, or contingency fee is also usually applied. Read through the agreement between you and your lawyer carefully and discuss any questions you may have with your lawyer.

Again, never choose a lawyer on the basis of a "No Win No Fee" arrangement. Choose the best lawyer for you and discuss the issue of costs with them.