Legal aid

You may be able to get legal aid to help pay your legal fees. This might include the cost of getting legal advice and representation in court.

You'll have to show that:

  • your case is serious – for example, involving domestic abuse
  • you can’t afford to pay your legal costs

What kind of cases can you get legal aid for?

Legal aid isn’t available for every kind of legal case – but you can get it for lots of things associated with domestic abuse, including:

  • protection from domestic abuse, such as court orders (injunctions)
  • protection from harassment
  • legal advice about children, divorce or finances if you’ve been in an abusive relationship
  • homelessness or risk of homelessness
  • mediation during divorce or separation
  • asylum applications

What will I need?

For claims involving domestic abuse, you’ll need evidence that you or your child have experienced it.

This could come from your doctor, the police, the law courts, social services, a domestic abuse support service or other professional or official organisation.

GPs and health professionals are not allowed to charge you for a letter to support your legal aid application if you have experienced domestic abuse.

You’ll also have to provide some financial evidence to show that you can’t afford to pay yourself, such as bank statements, pay slips and benefits statements.

How do I find out if I can get it?

If you’re applying for a court order for protection from domestic abuse through our free CourtNav service, we will help you find a legal firm who will tell you if you can get legal aid.

You can also use the GOV.UK’s online tool, which aims to tell you what legal aid you can get.

Help with court fees

If you’re on benefits, a low income or don’t have much money saved, you may be able to get money off your court fees.

You can check using an online application from GOV.UK.

I can't get legal aid and I can't afford legal advice

If you can’t get legal aid and can’t afford legal advice, we still may be able to help.

We’ll give you free legal advice if you’re currently involved in a domestic abuse case, or anything that’s going to the civil or family courts, including cases about your children, divorce or financial arrangements.

Please tell us about your situation on this form and email it to [email protected]. Call us on 0203 745 8921 if you need help completing it.

If we can’t give advice on your particular case, we'll give you details of other organisations that can.

Have a question? Just ask us.

Get in touch on [email protected]