Lawyers are 'on duty' at the ACT Magistrates Court and Children's Court, and at mental health sittings of the ACT Civil and Administrative Tribunal (ACAT) to help people who have a hearing on the day, but do not have their own lawyer. Duty lawyers are either lawyers employed by Legal Aid ACT, or private lawyers who are paid by us to help you.
Duty lawyer services are free and are not means tested.
Duty lawyers often have to help many people each day, so they may only be able to give you quick help for some matters. It is important when you go to court to take with you all documents you have received about the case.
Details of duty lawyer services in the ACT are:
|Court or Tribunal||Types of Legal Matters||Times Available|
|ACT Magistrates Court||Criminal law matters||9am - midday on sitting days|
|Interim Domestic Violence Orders and Personal Protection Orders||9am - 5pm Monday to Friday|
|ACT Children's Court||Criminal law matters||9am - midday on sitting days|
|Family Court||Family Law matters||Part of each sitting day|
|Federal Magistrates Court||Part of each sitting day|
|ACAT||Assistance for clients detained under the Mental Health (Treatment and Care) Act.||Contact us for more information|
For more information about duty lawyers, see the FAQs.