Free Legal Services and Resources in Queensland

July 16, 2018

in

Personal Injury

by

Ayla Dolan

Needing legal services is a situation that no one hopes to be in. It's often difficult to come to terms with the fact that you need help, let alone trying to think about what the next steps are. It's easy to get confused by who you need to talk to and then there's the thought of how much speaking to an expert is going to cost. Added to the stress of the incident or dispute at hand, this financial strain can be devastating. Fortunately for Queenslanders there are a number of businesses and associations that offer a variety of free legal services. Here is a list of Queensland-based resources help you find the right legal services.

Builder Dispute Services

Community Legal ServicesCompensation Services

Consumer Rights Services Debts and Dispute Services

Employment Law ServicesFamily Law Services

Industry Ombudsman Services

Legal Aid ServicesMedical Negligence Services

Rental Property Dispute ServicesVictims of Crime Services

Wills and Estates Services

Legal Aid

Legal Aid Queensland 1300 65 11 88 Monday-Friday, 8.30am-5.00pm Or visit a local Legal Aid Queensland office LAQ Services Include:

  • online legal information and publications
  • legal advice (eligibility conditions apply)
  • help in court*
  • lawyer assisted dispute resolution (family law mediation)
  • community legal education
  • referrals to other legal organisations

*To be represented in court by a LAQ provided lawyer the client will need to apply for a means tested grant of legal aid. A contribution may need to be paid if a lawyer takes the case.

Community Legal Centres - Free Legal Services

Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Women's Legal Services NQ ATSIWLSNQ provides legal advice, casework including court representation, community legal education and outreach clinics and CLE workshops for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women in Townsville and in rural and remote areas of North Queensland.

1800 082 600 http://www.atsiwlsnq.org.au/ Level 3 42 Sturt St TOWNSVILLE QLD 4810

Aboriginal Family Legal Service Southern Queensland The Aboriginal Family Legal Service Southern Queensland, Indigenous Corporation is a Community Legal Centre and referral service offering legal advice representation and advocacy to Indigenous victims of family violence in the communities of Charleville, Cherbourg, Cunnamulla, Goondiwindi, Mitchell, Murgon, Quilpie, Roma and St George.

1800 185 950 http://www.aflssq.org.au/ 17 Spencer St ROMA QLD 4455

Basic Rights Queensland Inc. Basic Rights Queensland (formerly "Welfare Rights Centre") is a state-wide specialist community legal centre, providing free advice, advocacy and legal services to people having problems with social security or disability discrimination.

1800 358 511 PO Box 293 FORTITUDE VALLEY QLD 4006

Bayside Community Legal Service Inc. This service provides free general legal advice and a referral service. The target group is the general population, with an emphasis on low income groups. No means test is applied. The service receives only minimal funding and operates with volunteer assistance.

(07) 3162 3282 Wynnum Community Centre 1st Floor, 105 Florence Street Wynnum QLD 4178

Cairns Community Legal Centre The Cairns Community Legal Centre Inc. provides free legal services for members of the community experiencing disadvantage across a range of areas of law including family law, domestic violence, peace and good behaviour orders, elder law, motor vehicle damage, debt recovery, consumer complaints, bankruptcy, employment law, discrimination work, neighbourhood disputes, criminal law, traffic matters and other miscellaneous matters.

1800 062 608 http://www.cclc.org.au/ Level 1, Main Street Arcade 85 Lake Street CAIRNS QLD 4870

Caxton Legal Centre Inc. In operation for over 30 years, Caxton Legal Centre offers free legal advice and social work services, publishes self-help kits and handbooks, and undertakes community legal education and law reform activities.

(07) 3214 6333 http://www.caxton.org.au 1 Manning Street SOUTH BRISBANE QLD 4103

Central Queensland Community Legal Centre The service provides general legal advice, referral and some casework on a full time basis. It services communities stretching from just south of Mackay to Bundaberg and west to the Queensland border. The Centre also undertakes collaborative community legal education activities.

1800 155 121 (Central QLD only) http://www.cqclc.org.au 240 Quay Street ROCKHAMPTON QLD 4700

Community Legal Centres Queensland Community Legal Centres Queensland is the state based peak body representing funded and unfunded Community Legal Centres (CLCs) operating throughout Queensland.

(07) 3392 0092 http://communitylegalqld.org.au PO Box 119 STONES CORNER QLD 4120

Environmental Defenders Office (Qld) Inc The Environmental Defenders Office (Qld) Inc. is a non-profit, non-government community legal centre dedicated to providing legal advice and representation to individuals and community groups working to protect the environment.

(07) 3211 4466 http://www.edoqld.org.au 8/205 Montague Rd WEST END QLD 4101

Environmental Defenders Office of Northern Queensland EDO-NQ offers a casework and legal advice service, community education and also participates in law reform.EDO-NQ assists a wide range of environmentally-concerned residents of North Queensland, from Mackay to the Queensland’s northern border with Papua New Guinea and west to Queensland’s border with the Northern Territory.

(07) 4028 3739 http://www.edonq.org.au Room 3, Serbian Cultural Centre, 67 Greenslopes Street NORTH CAIRNS QLD 4870

Gold Coast Community Legal Centre & Advice Bureau Inc. The Gold Coast Community Legal Centre & Advice Bureau Inc. [formerly Citizens Advice Bureau and Gold Coast Legal Service & Highway Legal Service) is a generalist community legal centre operating in Southport and servicing the whole of the Gold Coast region from Beenleigh to Tweed Heads.

(07) 5532 9611 http://www.advicebureau.org.au 34 Railway Street SOUTHPORT QLD 4215

Goondiwindi Community Legal Service The Goondiwindi Community Legal Service provides daily legal advice sessions and a monthly legal advice session from the Rural Women’s Outreach Solicitor.

(07) 4670 0716 http://www.caregoondiwindi.org.au 56 Marshall Street GOONDIWINDI QLD 4390

Junkuri Laka Community Legal Centre Aboriginal Corporation Junkuri Laka assists in a range of matters from representation in court to organising community service projects; from assisting native title corporations to mediating conflicts in the community; from talking with the government about alcohol regulations to publishing a newsletter.

64 7 4745 7278 http://www.junkurilaka.org/ 2 Lardil Street Gununa MORNINGTON ISLAND

Lesbian Gay Bisexual Trans Intersex Legal Service Inc. The LGBTI Legal Service Inc. is a community-based legal service providing free legal advice, assistance and referral to the LGBTI communities. The LGBTI Legal Service operates from space generously supplied by QAHC. The Service is non-profit and unfunded, staffed entirely by volunteers.

0401 936 232 http://www.lgbtilegalservice.org/ 30 Helen Street NEWSTEAD QLD 4006

Mackay Regional Community Legal Centre The Mackay Regional Community Legal Centre Inc. (MRCLC) is an independent non-profit organisation funded by the Queensland Department of Justice and Attorney-General to provide a generalist legal service. Funding is also received from the Commonwealth Government as part of the Family Relationship Centre partnership.

The service is administered by a volunteer management committee.

(07) 4953 1211 Suite 4, City Court Arcade 80 Victoria Street MACKAY QLD 4740

Moreton Bay Regional Community Legal Service Inc. MBRCLS provides free and confidential legal advice to individuals in the Moreton Bay Region.

(07) 5495 5916 http://www.mbrcls.org.au/ 9 George St CABOOLTURE QLD 4510

North Queensland Women’s Legal Service - Cairns NQWLS Cairns is a community based legal service developed and operated by women for women residing in North Queensland.The service offers assistance in areas of law which primarily affect women including family law, domestic violence and child protection.

(07) 4033 5825 http://www.nqwls.com.au Suite 4, Level 1, 88 Abbott Street CAIRNS QLD 4870

North Queensland Women’s Legal Service - Townsville NQWLS Townsville is a community based legal service developed and operated by women for women residing in North Queensland. The service offers assistance in areas of law which  primarily affect women including family law, domestic violence and child protection.

(07) 4772 5400 http://www.nqwls.com.au 42 Sturt Street TOWNSVILLE QLD 4810

Nundah Community Support Group Inc. The service provides free legal advice and referrals from qualified solicitors. Operating from the Nundah Neighbourhood Centre volunteer legal practitioners and students are familiar with the community centre's resources so that they can also provide information on and referral to other services such as counselling.

(07) 3260 6820 http://www.ncsgi.com.au/ 14 Station Street NUNDAH QLD 4012

Pine Rivers Community Legal Service The Pine Rivers Community Legal Service provides general legal advice (no telephone advice available).

(07) 3881 3500 http://www.encircle.org.au/ 3/481 Gympie Road STRATHPINE QLD 4500

Prisoners' Legal Service Inc. Prisoners’ Legal Service is a community legal centre providing free legal advice to incarcerated persons and their families on matters relating to imprisonment. The service is provided throughout the state of Queensland, Australia.

(07) 3846 5074 http://www.plsqld.com/ GPO Box 257 BRISBANE QLD 4000

Queensland Advocacy Incorporated Queensland Advocacy Incorporated (QAI) is an independent, community based systems advocacy organisation for People with Disability. QAI’s mission is to promote, protect and defend, through advocacy, the fundamental needs and rights and lives of the most vulnerable People With disability in Queensland.

(07) 3844 4200 http://www.qai.org.au/ 2nd Floor, South Central 43 Peel Street (Cnr Merivale Street) SOUTH BRISBANE QLD 4101

Queensland Indigenous Family Violence Legal Service Queensland Indigenous Family Violence Legal Service [QIFVLS] is an organisation with four regional offices in Cairns, Mt Isa, Rockhampton and Townsville. From these locations our teams provide a regular outreach service to their designated communities.

1800 88 77 00 http://www.qifvls.com.au/ Level 1, Suite 5, 101-111  Spence Street CAIRNS QLD 4870

Queensland Public Interest Law Clearing House Incorporated The Queensland Public Interest Law Clearing House Inc. (QPILCH) is a legal referral & service organisation. We refer civil law public interest cases that meet our guidelines to member firms & barristers for free legal assistance & we manage the Queensland Law Society & Bar Association Pro Bono Schemes.

(07) 3846 6317 http://www.qpilch.org.au/ PO Box 3631 SOUTH BRISBANE BC QLD 4001

Refugee and Immigration Legal Service The Refugee and Immigration Legal Service (RAILS) provides free legal assistance in immigration and refugee cases to people in need.

(07) 3846 9300 http://www.rails.org.au/ 1st Floor, Boundary Chambers 170 Boundary Street WEST END QLD 4101

Robina Community Legal Centre Inc. Robina Community Legal Centre provides free legal advice in the following practice areas: family and domestic violence; consumer and debt; employment; tenancy; minor crime and traffic offences; micro business; and immigration law.

0423 466 286 http://www.rclc.net.au/ GCCC Robina Community Centre 196 Robina Town Centre Drive (newer Building Across From Library) ROBINA QLD 4226

Seniors Legal and Support Service (Fraser Coast) The Seniors Legal & Support Service services the Fraser Coast region providing assistance to seniors experiencing abuse or exploitation. The service aims to prevent elder abuse through education and advocacy. Seniors Legal and Support Service is managed by the Hervey Bay Neighbourhood Centre.

07 4124 6863 http://www.hbnc.net.au/ 16 Torquay Road HERVEY BAY QLD 4655

South West Brisbane Community Legal Centre The South West Brisbane CLC offers basic assistance & advice in a range of legal matters including: Family Law; Minor Civil; Motor vehicle accidents (property damage only); Wills & Enduring Powers of Attorney; Child Protection issues & Youth Criminal (including representation for under 18's). The Centre is staffed on a full time basis. Services include legal advice, referral & community legal education.

(07) 3372 7677 http://www.communitylegal.org.au/ Shop 55A Inala Plaza Kittyhawk Avenue INALA QLD 4077

Suncoast Community Legal Service The Suncoast Community Legal Service provides general legal assistance in the form of face to face consultations, information, referrals, and assistance in filling out forms.

(07) 5443 7827 http://www.suncoastcommunitylegal.org The TAFE Building Ground Floor 170 Horton Parade MAROOCHYDORE QLD 4558

TASC Ipswich The Advocacy and Support Centre Ipswich (TASC) provides general face-to-face and telephone legal advice and assistance.

1300 008 272 http://www.tascinc.org.au 60 South Street IPSWICH QLD 4305

TASC Roma The Suncoast Community Legal Service provides general legal assistance in the form of face to face consultations, information, referrals, and assistance in filling out forms.

1300 008 272 http://www.tascinc.org.au Roma Community Hub 57 Bungil Street ROMA  QLD 4555

TASC Toowoomba The Advocacy and Support Centre (TASC) provides general face-to-face and telephone legal advice and assistance. Rural Women’s Outreach Legal Service is available to rural and indigenous women in South West Queensland.

1300 008 272 http://www.tascinc.org.au 223 Hume Street TOOWOOMBA QLD 4350

TASC Warwick The Advocacy and Support Centre (TASC) provides general face-to-face and telephone legal advice and assistance.

1300 008 272 http://www.tascinc.org.au 69 Guy Street WARWICK QLD 4370

Taylor Street Community Legal Service The Taylor Street Community Legal Service provides general legal advice and outreach services across the Fraser Coast, Bundaberg, Gympie and North Burnett regions.

(07) 4194 2663 http://hbnc.net.au/hbnc/hbnc-programs/taylor-street-legal.html 16 Torquay Road HERVEY BAY QLD 4655

Tenants Queensland Inc Tenants Queensland (formerly Tenants' Union of Qld) is a state-wide community organisation that provides services for and represents the interests of residential tenants in Queensland. Tenants Queensland works to improve and protect the rights of all people who rent their home including tenants in private rental, public housing, community housing, caravan parks and boarding house tenants.

1300 744 263 http://www.tenantsqld.org.au Level 1, 87 Wickham Tce SPRING HILL QLD 4000

Townsville Community Legal Service The Townsville Community Legal Service provides information and referral, legal advice, casework (within guidelines), outreach services, and community legal education.

(07) 4721 5511 http://www.tcls.org.au Suite 2, 181 Sturt Street TOWNSVILLE QLD 4810

Women's Legal Service The Women’s Legal Service is run by women for women.Assistance is provided by lawyers and social workers during the day and several evenings each week. The service is interested in all areas of law which impact upon women, but has extensive involvement in family law and domestic violence issues.

07 3392 0644 http://www.wlsq.org.au 8 Ponsonby Street ANNERLEY QLD 4103

YFS Legal YFS Legal provides legal advice, support and representation for young people under 25 within the Logan City and surrounding areas.

(07) 3826 1500 http://www.yfs.org.au 2-4 Rowan Street SLACKS CREEK QLD 4127

Youth Advocacy Centre The Youth Advocacy Centre (YAC) offers free confidential legal and welfare assistance to young people under 17 who live in or around Brisbane, and on a limited basis by telephone to young people outside Brisbane but living in Queensland. Help may also be available to 17 and 18 year olds if their problem is about school or being held in a Brisbane juvenile detention centre.

(07) 3356 1002 http://www.yac.net.au Unit 4/162 Petrie Terrace, PETRIE TERRACE QLD 4000

Family Law - Free Legal Services

Relationships Australia Relationships Australia Queensland offers a range of paid and free legal services including complimentary mediation services. 1300 364 277 Monday - Friday, 8.00am-8.00pm Saturday 10.00am - 4.00pm RAQ Services Include:

  • Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Program
  • Child Consultancy
  • Children's Contact Service
  • Domestic and Family Violence Prevention
  • Family Dispute Resolution
  • Financial Counselling
  • Online Dispute Resolution
  • Relationship Counselling

Wills and Estates - Free Legal Services

The Public Trustee of Queensland The Public Trustee of Queensland offers a free will-making service to all Queenslanders. The process is quick and easy—offices are located across Queensland. Professionally trained will-makers can answer most questions and an experienced legal team is available for more complex questions. 1300 360 044 444 Queen Street BRISBANE QLD 4000 The Public Trustee is the largest will-making service in Queensland, they:

  • are experienced (have been serving Queensland since 1916)
  • provide free and safe document storage
  • have regional offices located across Queensland
  • have a network of Queensland Government Agent Program (QGAP) agents, Centrelink offices and courthouses that can help you on their behalf.

Contact your local community law centre to ask about their free will making services (see above for our comprehensive guide).

Victims of Crime - Free Legal Services

Queensland State Government Victims of Crime 1300 546 587 Monday-Friday, 8.30am-5.00pm The government services include:

  • support for victims of domestic violence
  • support for victims of sexual abuse and sexual assault
  • support for victims under 18
  • support for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander victims of crime
  • support for relatives of homicide victims
  • counselling services
  • court and legal support
  • financial assistance

Debts and Disputes - Free Legal Services

Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal 1300 753 228 Monday-Friday, 8.30am-4.30pm Level 9, 259 Queen Street, BRISBANE QLD 4000 QCAT services include:

  • adult administration and guardianship
  • administrative decisions
  • anti-discrimination
  • building disputes
  • children and young people
  • consumer disputes
  • debt disputes
  • minor civil disputes
  • occupational regulation
  • other civil disputes
  • residential tenancy disputes
  • retail shop leases
  • tree disputes

Consumer Rights - Free Legal Sevices

Fair Trading 13 74 68 Queensland Government Service Centre Upper Plaza Terrace 33 Charlotte Street BRISBANE QLD 4000 Monday–Tuesday, Thursday–Friday 8:30am–4:30pm Wednesday 9:30am–4:30pm Fair trading services include:

  • General complaints
  • Unsafe products
  • Financial investigations

Australian Competition & Consumer Commission 1300 302 502 Level 24, 400 George Street BRISBANE QLD 4000 Monday-Friday, 8.30am-5.30pm ACCC services include:

  • Consumer rights and guarantees
  • Repairs, replacements and refunds
  • Cancelling services
  • Warranties
  • Consumer complaints
  • Surcharges
  • Non-delivery of products
  • Contract agreements

Industry Ombudsmen Online - Free Legal Services

Telecommunications Ombudsmen The Telecommunications Industry Ombudsmen provides an independent dispute resolution service for small business and residential customers who have a complaint about their telephone or internet service in Australia. The service is free to customers. 1800 062 058 www.tio.com.auAustralian Energy Regulator

The AER regulates wholesale and retail energy markets, and energy networks, under national energy legislation and rules. Our functions mostly relate to energy markets in eastern and southern Australia. 1800 662 837 www.ewoq.com.auFinancial Ombudsman

The Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) Australia offers fair, independent and accessible dispute resolution for consumers who are unable to resolve complaints with member financial services providers. A not-for-profit, non-government organisation, FOS resolves disputes quickly and efficiently, providing a cheaper alternative than going to court. Our service is free of charge for applicants, with the costs of running the service being met by our members. 1800 367 287 www.fos.org.au

Rental Property Disputes - Free Legal Services

Rental Tenancy Authority Dispute Resolution Service The RTA is the Queensland Government statutory authority that administers the Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act 2008 (the Act). The RTA is responsible to the Minister for Housing and Public Works. 1300 366 311 Monday-Friday, 8.30am-5.00pm RTA services include:

  • Dispute resolution
  • Tenancy issues
  • Investigations

Tenants Queensland Tenants Queensland provides a range of services for Queensland tenants. 1300 744 263 Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm Level 1, 87 Wickham Terrace, SPRING HILL QLD 4000 TQ services include:

  • Telephone advice service
  • Tenancy publications
  • Community education activities
  • Tenancy law training
  • Tenancy law reform campaigns

Employment Law - Free Legal Services

Fair Work Ombudsman

The fair work ombudsman may assist with a number of claims via their online portal including those regarding:

  • Pay
  • Leave
  • Ending employment
  • Employee entitlements
  • Awards and agreements

Medical Negligence - Free Legal Services

Queensland Health Ombudsman 133 646 13281 George Street BRISBANE QLD 4003 QHO services include:

  • Receive and investigate complaints about health services and health service providers, including registered and unregistered health practitioners.
  • Decide what action to take in relation to those complaints and, in certain instances, take immediate action to protect the safety of the public.
  • Monitor the health, conduct and performance functions of the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency and national health practitioner boards.
  • Provide information about minimising and resolving health service complaints.
  • Report publicly on the performance of our function

If you have experience medical negligence, you may be entitled to compensation, make sure you get free medical compensation advice.

Home Builder Disputes - Free Legal Services

Queensland Building and Construction Commission myQBCC is a new digital service centre that allows you to access and interact with us 24/7 from any device, giving you the freedom to choose when you need us. 139 332 24/7 QBCC services relate to:

  • Buying or building
  • Complaints and insurance
  • Maintenance and safety
  • Licenses
  • Business tools

Risk-Free Compensation - Free Advice

Smith’s Lawyers Smith's Lawyers is a Queensland law firm that offers a truly risk-free compensation promise: no win, no fee, no catch. This includes free advice from Principal lawyer, Greg Smith, and an initial meeting in the comfort of your own home. Although many other firms may offer a "no win, no fee" promise, clients may still find themselves in significant debt due to needing to cover the other sides court costs and legal fees. The impact of this financial burden can be devastating, particularly while already coping with a dispute or incident. With Smith's Lawyers, if you lose your case you won't pay a cent; not to us, not to anyone. 

Of course, the main aim of taking your case is to help you win - something Smith's Lawyers has achieved great recognition for since 1996. Once you have won your case, you can rest assured that Smith's will only charge for the work done to win the compensation claim; costs which are first checked by an independent assessor before being handed over to the client. 

1800 266 801 1/18 Bay St, SOUTHPORT QLD 4215

Ayla Dolan
Rebecca Earl

Based in Brisbane, Ayla is a contributor to the Smith's Lawyers blog

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