How to apply Legal Aid

How to apply for Legal Aid


Legal Aid may either pay for your legal representation or provide you with a lawyer who is employed by Legal Aid. With recent funding cuts to Legal Aid, it has become increasingly difficult to get a grant of legal aid.


How do I make an application for legal aid?


In order to be assessed for a grant of Legal Aid you must contact them and make an application for legal aid. Legal Aid may provide representation for people charged with criminal offences appearing before the Local Court, Childrens Court, District Court, Supreme Court, Court of Criminal Appeal and the High Court.


What Paperwork do I need for my legal aid application?


You will have to provide details such as:


  • proof of your income, such as copies of your pay slips or a copy of your Centrelink Statement of Benefit
  • last three months of your bank or credit union statements for all accounts
  • other documentation depending on your legal matter


Grants of legal aid are provided for a range of criminal, family or civil law matters. These may include:


  • offences which may incur a gaol sentence
  • family issues involving children
  • matters that involve DoCs
  • other issues such as discrimination and mental health.


You may be eligible for Legal Aid even if you are working.


Can I choose my own solicitor on legal aid?


Sometimes Legal Aid will make the grant of aid to a private Solicitor, you should provide them with details of a Solicitor if you would like them to consider paying a private lawyer.


LY Lawyers are on the General Crime Panel and the Serious Crime Panel. The Serious Criminal Law Panel is a specialist panel. The panel is only open to solicitors. Solicitors appointed to the panel instruct barristers in legally aided matters, subject to Legal Aid NSW policies. We are experts in making legal aid applications for our clients, and understand all the Legal Aid guidelines.

This means we can act for people charged with a wide variety of matters including:

  • Local Court Committals (for complex criminal matters)
  • Supreme Court Trials
  • Supreme Court Sentences
  • Court of Criminal Appeal (CCA)
  • High Court and Federal Court


If you have been charged for a criminal offence and cannot afford a privately paid solicitor for your case, call LY Lawyers for a free consultation at one of our many Sydney offices, on 1300 595 299. We will show you step by step how to apply for Legal Aid.