There are 2 kinds of legal aid available:
- advice and assistance
- civil legal aid
Advice and assistance helps pay for advice from a solicitor on any matter of Scots law, civil or criminal.
The solicitor can:
- advise you on whether you have a legal case to take forward
- negotiate with the other person or agency you're in dispute with
- advise you whether to apply for legal aid to take the matter to court
- apply on your behalf for civil legal aid
You have to qualify for advice and assistance and may need to pay something towards the costs.
Civil legal aid helps pay for your solicitor to act for you in court. You have to qualify for civil legal aid and may need to pay something towards the costs.
Some people need only advice and assistance, others need only civil legal aid, and some need both.
Many people start the legal process with advice and assistance, and then move on to civil legal aid.
If you don't qualify for advice and assistance, you may still qualify for civil legal aid, and vice versa. You can ask your solicitor about this.
The Scottish Legal Aid Board manages the legal aid system in Scotland and can advise on your eligibility.
The information was last updated on: 15th January 2019