Where to get legal help
You can get free, accurate and reliable help for many legal issues from the following places.
Victoria Law Foundation
The Victoria Law Foundation has published a large number of free plain language guides to the law. These cover matters such as parking laws, responsible pet ownership, resolving disputes with your neighbours and understanding Victoria’s legal system.
The Foundation have also produced a website called ‘Everyday Law’ which may answer your legal questions and help you understand your rights under Victorian law.
Victoria Legal Aid
Victoria Legal Aid provides free legal information for all Victorians, and funds legal representation for people who meet certain criteria. For more information, visit the Victoria Legal Aid website
Community Legal Centres
Community legal centres provide free and low-cost help and advice for a range of legal issues. Visit the Federation of Community Legal Services website to find the contact details for the 50 community legal services located across Victoria.
Finding a lawyer
If you are looking for a lawyer you can find one in many different ways:
- a recommendation from someone you know
- a listing in the phone book
- a search over the internet
- a local firm in your area
- Check the Law Institute of Victoria’s free legal referral service.
Is my lawyer entitled to practice law?
Only a registered ‘Australian legal practitioner’ is entitled to provide you with legal advice. You can search our Register of Legal Practitioners and Law Practices to check if a lawyer has a current practising certificate issued in Victoria.
The Law Handbook
The Law Handbook is published by the Fitzroy Legal Service. It contains legal information covering many of the common issues which people seek legal advice about, including family law, neighbourhood disputes, contracts, bankruptcy and wills.
Glossary of legal terms
A common concern we hear from the public is that lawyers use technical legal jargon that clients don’t understand.
Legal terms have very specific meanings which are not always easy to translate into plain language. To help non-lawyers understand legal terms, the Fitzroy Legal Service has compiled a comprehensive glossary of legal terms, available through the Law Handbook website.