Does my family law case qualify for legal aid?
23 June 2021
Some family law cases may qualify for legal aid, which is financial assistance to help eligible individuals cover their legal costs. Co-op Legal Services doesn't provide legal aid, so we are unable to take on legal aid cases. However, we have put together some brief guidance to help you to understand whether or not your case qualifies for legal aid.
Please note, Co-op Legal Services is not a legal aid provider. If you qualify for legal aid, you can find a list of legal aid providers on the Government website. If you do not qualify for legal aid, then you can choose to take advantage of our transparent, fixed fee Family Law and Divorce services.
Work out whether you qualify for legal aid
Whether you qualify for legal aid will depend on the type of family law case you have and your personal financial circumstances. Visit GOV.uk to find out whether you're eligible for legal aid.
Certain matters may qualify for legal aid, providing you also meet the necessary financial criteria. These include domestic abuse, family mediation, harrassment and enforcing or contesting an injunction.
In some cases, legal aid might be available regardless of your financial circumstances.
If your case is a civil case (which includes family, debt and housing matters) you will usually need to demonstrate that you cannot afford to pay for legal advice. This will require you to provide details of your income, benefits, property and savings, as well as your partner's (if applicable). You will also need to demonstrate that your problem is serious.
If your matter relates to mental health, children in care or child abduction then your financial situation will not be taken into account.
In some cases, you may have to provide evidence to validate your problem. For example, if you or your child have been the victim of abuse, you may need to produce evidence of this. This is best done with either a court order or a GP letter.
In criminal cases you will automatically get legal aid for representation in court if you are under 16 (or under 10 and in full-time education) or on certain benefits. For criminal matters you also have the right to free legal advice if you are questioned at a police station.
If you think you might qualify for legal aid then you can check this by calling the Civil Legal Advice line on 0345 345 4345. The alternatives to legal aid if you are on a low income and cannot afford legal advice would be:
If you don't qualify for legal aid
If you do not qualify for legal aid, but want affordable, fixed fee family law advice, our family law solicitors can help. We offer a wide range of family law services, with transparent pricing, to suit your needs and your budget.
Once we have provided you with a written quote for the agreed work, that price won't change, so you'll know exactly where you stand right from the start.