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Legal Aid

Several of our lawyers are members of the the Legal Aid Commission’s Summary Criminal Law Panel, Indictable Criminal Law Panel and Serious and Complex Criminal Law Panel.

This means that, in certain limited situations, the Legal Aid Commission may pay us at a reduced rate to undertake criminal cases.

If you have a District or Supreme Court trial date and cannot afford to pay privately, we may in certain circumstances be able to make an application for Legal Aid to pay us to represent you at trial.

Am I eligible for Legal Aid?

You may be eligible for legal aid if:

  • You are gettting a Government Allowance (e.g. New Start, Disability Support Pension, Single Parent Pension, Youth Allowance).
  • You are in custody; or
  • You are receiving a very low income.

How can I apply for Legal Aid?

If you have a District or Supreme Court trial date, we can assist you to lodge a legal aid application, or we can lodge one on your behalf.

You will need to provide proof of income (e.g. a printout from Centrelink) and your three most recent bank statements.

What if my partner / family member / friend is in custody?

We can arrange a prison visit to advise your loved-one and get information to complete a legal aid application.

We offer fixed fees for all prison visits.

Which cases qualify for Legal Aid?

Legal Aid can be granted in most criminal cases and more-serious traffic cases..

Examples of criminal cases that qualify include assaults, frauds, break & enter, robbery, drug, sexual assault, terrorism, murder cases etc.

Do very serious criminal cases qualify for Legal Aid?

Yes, legal aid is available for even the most serious criminal cases.

In fact, there may be a better chance of getting legal aid in these cases.

Our defence team is extremely experienced and highly successful in running a wide range of complex and lengthy criminal trials; including murder, robbery, drug importation and supply, fraud, serious assault and sexual assault trials.

Many of our lawyers are members of the Legal Aid Commission’s ‘Serious Criminal Law Panel’ which means that the Legal Aid Commission can assign us even the most serious criminal cases.

If Legal Aid is granted, will my case always be assigned to Sydney Criminal Lawyers®?

Unfortunately not.

Legal Aid’s policy is to take criminal cases “in house” – which means give it to a lawyer employed by the Legal Aid Commission – unless a legal aid lawyer is not available or there are other circumstances which justify giving the case to us.

Will I have to pay anything at all?

You will normally have to pay a $75 contribution to the Legal Aid Commission.

That fee can be waived for persons in custody.

There are normally no other costs.

In fact, it is an offence for any lawyer to accept a grant of legal aid and to also receive private funding.

Why does Sydney Criminal Lawyers® undertake Legal Aid cases?

Our dedicated criminal lawyers believe everyone is entitled to the best defence in criminal and serious traffic cases.

We will fight for you throughout the proceedings and ensure that everything is done to produce the best possible result.

So if you’re case has been listed for a District or Supreme Court trial, give us a call and one of our specialist lawyers will help by submitting a legal aid application on your behalf.

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