Where Can You Get Free Legal Advice
You have a number of options where you can get free legal advice online. You can browse our extensive selection of free legal advice guides by clicking solicitors advice on the menu above. You can also view a number of free legal advice guides available on our blog or you can get advice from any of the organisations listed below.
High Street Solicitors
Law Centres Offer Free Advice
You can get free legal advice from your local Law Centre. Law centres are staffed by solicitors and other legal professionals – and normally will offer advice on matters such as employment, immigration, housing and welfare benefits.
Law Centres offer free legal advice, casework and free representation to individuals and community groups. They monitor local trends and issues in the course of their work, and highlight them to bring about necessary policy changes and to prevent future problems. Law Centres also help to build capacity within local communities by providing training and supporting local community groups and educating people about the law and their rights.
All Law Centres are independent and operate on a not-for-profit basis. And are accountable to the communities they serve, often with local people acting on their steering committees. Mostly they exist to improve the daily lives of the communities they work in.
With more than half of all law centres and not-for-profit legal advice services in England and Wales closing over the past six years, according to government figures. It is now proving harder and harder for individuals and communities to get access to free legal advice.
The scale of the reduction, caused by deep cuts to both legal aid and local authority funding is alarming. In 2013-14 there were 94 local areas with law centres or agencies offering free legal advice services, the Ministry of Justice has confirmed. By this year, 2019-20, the number stood at just 47.
Funding for Law Centres through legal aid contracts between 2010-11 and 2018-19, fell from £12.1m to £7.1m. The impact of this reduction was a double blow because removal of legal aid eligibility for many types of cases coincided with a financial crisis among local authorities, which have been forced to withdraw support for local law centres. It is estimated there are 1.5 million people living in destitution and with no access to free legal advice.
You can get more information and find your local law centre here.
Citizens Advice Bureau
Your local Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) offers free legal advice, confidential and impartial advice on a wide range of legal matters and your best course of action to take. CA (previously called Citizens Advice Bureau)is an independent organisation that specialise in confidential information and advice to assist people with legal, debt, consumer, housing and other problems.
The dual aims of the CA service is “to provide the advice people need for the problems they face” and secondly “to improve the policies and principles that affect people’s lives” This research and campaigns agenda also known as “social policy”.
Annually a third of the UK online residents visited the CA website with four in ten of the British population contacting Citizens Advice at some point during their lives. You can find your nearest office here.
The Law Society
Find a Solicitor is a free service run by the law society for anyone looking for information about organisations or people providing legal services in England and Wales who are regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA). Find a Solicitor uses data held by the SRA to find a regulated solicitor in the UK.
The Law Society does not provide legal advice. But provides information about getting advice from a solicitor. For those who are eligible for Legal aid towards their case, you can use the law society website to find a solicitor or legal adviser in your area that can help you. Find details UK law firms, should you need to contact one directly (please note any inclusion or link to external law firms does not constitue an endorsement or recommnedation for that firm and is merely included here as a resource). Here you can access our free legal advice blog
You can post a question on our free legal advice website. But unfortunately we cannot guarantee you will receive an answer. Answers are provided at the discretion of the solicitors and other legal professionals who give their time for free. You can post your question here
Ask-Solicitors have a team of specialist & experienced solicitors who can give you free solicitor advice you with your legal issue. Ask your question and one of our specialist free advice solicitors will review your inquiry and respond with detailed legal advice via email. Visit ask solicitors here
Legal Aid Free Solicitors Services
Legal aid was established by the Legal Aid and Advice Act 1949. Legal aid has been drastically cut for the majority of the UK population since 2012.
Legal Aid Eligibility Criteria?
- Losing your home, or if it’s in serious disrepair
- Protecting yourself or your child from abuse or harassment
- Some types of clinical negligence
- Poor quality care you or a family member are getting due to age, disability or special educational needs
- Advice on finances, children or divorce if you’ve been in an abusive relationship
- A child in your family is at risk of being taken into care
- Family mediation
- Challenging the way the government has made a decision about you
- Seeking asylum or being the victim of human trafficking
- Being arrested, charged or questioned by the police
- Representation at a mental health tribunal or inquest
Legal aid in England and Wales is administered by the Legal Aid Agency and previously Legal Services Commission. Dependent on the type of case, legal aid may or may not be means tested and in many cases legal aid can be free for those on benefits, out of work and have no savings or assets.
Legal aid for criminal cases is normally provisioned through private law firms of solicitors and barristers. There are a limited number of public defenders that are employed directly by the legal aid agency providing advice in police stations and advocacy in magistrates and crown courts. Legal aid for civil cases is normally provided through solicitors and Barristers private practice but also by lawyers working in Law Centres and some not-for-profit advice agencies.
Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (LASPO)
The provision of legal aid is governed by the Access to Justice Act 1999 and the introduction of LASPO triggered an almost immediate 46% plunge in the number of cases eligible and granted. Legal aid stopped for areas of law that include family, welfare, housing and debt. It is widely acknowledged that cuts to legal aid have prevented the poorest people getting access to justice.
The government’s justification for the introduction of LASPO was because there were a significant number of people who could easily afford their own legal fees which were found to be were abusing the legal aid system, or cases which could clearly be settled with alternative dispute resolution were being unnecessarily being taken to court.
No Win No Fee Solicitors
Responsibility for funding legal services over the last decade has moved further away from provision by the state towards a more commercial based funding model. This has led to a more complicated method of dealing with the cost of legal services, including services like ‘no win, no fee’ arrangements.
Access to legal aid is now no longer available for many areas of law, no win no fee services enable people who might otherwise not be able to, afford to make a personal injury claim, fight an unfair dismissal or seek compensation for medical negligence incident.
The ‘no win, no fee’ model and has recently introduced damages based agreements (DBA) – this is where a solicitor or lawyer will take a percentage of any damages awarded to the claimant – alongside CFAs.
These type of arrangements offer lawyers the means to make fundamental undertakings to their client if they don’t win the case, they won’t have to pay. This could be a cost effective way to get the free legal adv