The reason why Howells Solicitors is one of the country’s leading providers of publicly funded legal services – Legal Aid as it’s often referred to – is our enduring belief in justice for all – everyone should have the right to high quality legal advice, regardless of their ability to pay. For over three decades, we’ve been providing that high quality advice to the people of South Yorkshire – and giving them the equality to which they’re entitled.
Despite the changes to Legal Aid that came into force on April 1st 2013, cutting public funding for many areas of the law, we still continue to offer the services where applicable and the government will still pay all or part of your legal costs, depending on your eligibility.
For those who are not entitled to the costs being fully paid, you may be required to contribute to the costs, or repay the costs if you receive money or property from a settlement.
Do I qualify for Legal Aid?
Don’t worry about working this out yourself. At your first appointment with us, we will carry out an assessment to see if you qualify and explain what happens next. There are various factors which will be taken into account including:
- Household income
- Any savings you have
- If you receive certain benefits, such as income support, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, guaranteed state pension credit etc
- You can also get legal help for an asylum problem if you receive government asylum support
From our first assessment we will be able to advise you on your entitlements and the
next step to take.
What areas of law can I get Legal Aid for?
Not all areas of law have government funding available for Legal Aid. The areas of law that we cover which can be paid for by Legal Aid currently are:
- Family cases with domestic violence
- Children matters including adoption, care proceedings and child abduction
- Housing – only for possession cases and homeless cases. You will only be able to get legal aid for disrepair cases if there is a threat of serious injury or harm occurring if the repairs are not done
- Welfare Benefits – only for appeals to the upper tribunal
- Debt – only if it involves possession of your home (see Housing above)
- Employment – only if your case involves discrimination
- Immigration – only for asylum matters
- Actions Against Police
- Public Law and Human Rights
- Mental Health
- Community Care
- Criminal Defence
- Youth Court
- Court Representation
We’re also committed to helping those who may not qualify for Legal Aid – but who would otherwise have difficulty in paying for legal advice – by looking at a range of other funding sources and payment options when we first sit down with you. Please don’t assume that if you can’t pay, we can’t help.