Where to find Legal assistance

If you require legal advice there are a number of service providers within both the private and public sectors. Depending on your financial situation and the nature of your legal matter, you may be able to seek assistance from either a private lawyer or law firm, a public legal service, or a pro bono assistance scheme.

Private law firms

Finding a lawyer that is right for you can be overwhelming!  However, there are many ways to find a lawyer which is right for you.

  1. The Law Society of Western Australia’s Referral Service.
    The Law Society of WA’s Find Your Lawyer Referral Service can assist you in finding a lawyer. The Law Society connects members of the public with the local legal profession and provides access to useful legal resources for the community.

Free or Low Cost Services

There are many Western Australian organisations, community legal centres, and legal services that are providing free or low cost services in WA.  Each service and organisation has their own eligibility requirements and practice areas.

This eligibility criterion is usually dependent on Federal funding and may change on short notice. Therefore each service should be checked individually.

Examples of low fee and probono organisations and services include:

Organisations and Services in other states and territories include:

Pro Bono Schemes

Pro bono services seek to provide assistance to members of the community that cannot afford the private services of a lawyer and who do not qualify for assistance from a public service provider.

  • Law Accessassists not-for-profits and individuals in genuine need of legal assistance that satisfies a means and merits test. Eligibility criteria and the application form can be found on the website.
  • Curtin Tax Clinic (CTC) – assists unrepresented taxpayers in meeting or complying with their taxation affairs. Eligibility and application to the clinic is completed on their website.

How to know a Lawyer is able to practice*

Information regarding a specific practitioner can be found with the Western Australian Legal Practice Board. This can includes information such as a list of practitioners who have faced disciplinary action, the date a lawyer got admitted, and whether an individual is in fact a practising lawyer.

For further information, please see:

Duty Lawyer

Legal Aid Western Australia (Legal Aid) provides a duty lawyer service throughout Western Australia.

If you are unable to find a lawyer to assist you, or if you would like legal advice on the day your matter is heard before the Court, you may be able to see a duty lawyer.

A duty lawyer cannot assist with representation at trial but may be available to assist with legal options, how to progress your matter, or what you can expect to happen in Court.

A duty lawyer may be able to assist with matters such as:

  • Criminal and traffic charges in the Magistrates Court or Children’s Court;
  • Parenting and children’s issues in the Family Court of WA;
  • Protection and care cases in the Children’s Court; and/or
  • Family Violence Restraining Order applications.

 If you would like to see a duty lawyer about criminal charges, a fee of $20 applies to see a duty lawyer in the Magistrates Court and $5 for concession card holders. It is free to speak to the duty lawyer if you are in custody or prison, or appearing within the Children’s Court.

For up-to-date and further information on the duty lawyer service, please see the Legal Aid website.