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Legal aid is the help you can sometimes get when you can't afford to pay your own legal costs.
To apply for legal aid, you'll need to find a solicitor that does legal aid work. They'll talk you through your options, let you know if you're likely to get legal aid and help you with the application process.
Before you apply for legal aid you should consider all your options for legal help – some could be cheaper or free.
What legal aid covers
The type of legal aid you apply for depends on the type of legal help you need (you can talk about this with your solicitor):
- advice and assistance – this can help with the costs of getting legal advice from a solicitor, like information on your rights and options or help with negotiations and paperwork
If needed, your solicitor may be able to represent you in court for:
- a civil case – for example, if you have housing issues, you're divorcing, have disputes about your children or need help with debt
- a Children's Hearing – for example, if you're a young person (or their parent/carer) asked to go to a hearing to sort out a problem
- a criminal case – for example, if you've been accused of a crime or face prison
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