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Qualifying for Legal Aid

I applied for Legal Aid earlier in the year and was rejected. At the time I didn't read the rejection letter closely as we were on deadline for provision of affadavits, and the LA online assessment tool had already suggested I probably wouldn't qualify. I had legal representation at the time, working on account, that I couldn't really afford.

Whilst organising files this evening, I re-read the rejection letter more closely and it seems that now, since I have sold some shares to pay debts, I may qualify??!

Can anyone more experienced give some advice? In my application earlier in the year I declared the shares I then owned worth about $15K (that I was holding to see if they would improve). I have since sold those shares and paid off some of my credit card debt (which strangely they don't take into consideration against the asset when assessing you).

Anyway, the rejection letter showed the calculations that my assessable assets exceeded the estimated costs of the proceedings. Ie. I should just sell them to pay. As the assets have now gone on legitimate debt (that existed at the last application) - do you think I may now be given a grant? I expect I will have to make some contribution based on my income, but if I read their figures correctly from last time, my % of Kevin07's Xmas bonus just might cover it .

I've just faxed the application, but would appreciate any advice until I receive their response.
If your application for legal aid fails, you may consider the 'Pro Bono Scheme' - this is where private law firms are willing to represent for free or a considerably lower fee.

Contact the law society for more info.

Legal aid

Chris,

Please remember that not only your financial situation is taken in to account, when obtaining legal aid.

They will also take in to consideration your case and what you are after in the form of orders.

In other words be reasonable in your expectations.

What I hear from the horse's mouth is that a lot of blokes fail on this issue alone.

Executive Member of SRL-Resources, the Family Law People on the site (Look for the Avatars).   Be mindful what you post in the public areas. 
Thanks Monteverdi. I'm the respondent to the application, and my first proposal is to dismiss. Should the Court not be inclined to do so, then my alternative proposal is very similar to current (consent) arrangements in place for almost three years where I have tried to address the concerns the other party has raised as their reasoning for change.

On the issue of being a respondent, does anyone else find it incredibly frustrating that they are forced to incur legal expenses through no "fault" of their own? A vengeful ex suddenly decides they don't like the arrangements, they don't engage genuinely in mediation, and drag you into Court at YOUR expense?

I'm aware that costs might be awarded, but they are not actual, and difficult to achieve from I gather.
Chris.

Have you read up on Rice and Asplund?

For the existing orders to be changed after almost three years there must be a significant change in circumstances.

Has there been such changes?

Rice and Asplund was our original reasoning, but they have continued to pursue the changes.

The younger child started school and the ex re-partnered which could be considered significant changes I suppose?

We have a two day hearing in November. Family report meetings next week. So we will find out shortly if R&A does apply.
Chris said
Rice and Asplund was our original reasoning, but they have continued to pursue the changes.

The younger child started school and the ex re-partnered which could be considered significant changes I suppose?
These are expected changes, children get older and many people re partner. The only arguments are whether these really are significant change of circumstances in terms of care and contact.
Chris said
We have a two day hearing in November. Family report meetings next week. So we will find out shortly if R&A does apply.
R&A is nothing to do with Family Reports. It is a Court argument/submission for the Judge or FM to decide.

Executive Member of SRL-Resources, the Family Law People on this site (look for the Avatars) Be mindful what you post in public areas. 
I had a horror story with Legal Aid.

Way back two years ago i had aid granted in my matter. This was after i made an application to have a named solicitor.

A condition of the grant was that it was kept in house at legal aid.

I had my first meeting at their office and asked if my original lawyer could be given the grant one more time.

The guy i saw said "we are a bit overworked so i will see what i can do for you"

After about two weeks i rang the office and actually spoke to the boss. I said what the guy had said to me and asked if any decision was made, i also said the guy said they were overworked and that i was happy to pass some of their workload off to someone else.

The Boss took real offence to this and literally started to insult me. I got off the phone in shock

THREE days later i got a letter asking for about a million financial details, within about a week of that my grant was cancelled.

Even when i confronted them with blatant wrong doings in their calculations of my income, including bank statements and centerlink statements, they totally ignored it. Ill never forget one of the lawyers there asking me what a leased car through a business was!!!!!

There was not even an avenue to appeal this decision

As a side to this, it seems the "boss" told the "guy" that i had told her he was moaning about his job and things like that.

How do i know this? Well, when i was in a cell because of my ex's groundless allegations he was one of the duty lawyers he got great pleasure is calling me all sorts of names at the top of his voice and at the same tie said he did not and would not represent me on the matter i was about to get bail on.

Dreadful behaviour by them, and one that has made me avoid them at all costs.

My experience of Legal Aid ICL's has been less than inspiring as well.

They must find it difficult, those who have taken authority as the truth, rather than truth as the authority

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