Legal Aid for Vulnerable South Africans on the Internet
3rd December 2017
Can I get Legal Cover on the Internet in South Africa?
- Yes. You do this by branch visit or
- or online
You can easily source for legal aid on the internet within South Africa. Importantly, professional legal representation and advice is provided by Legal Aid to vulnerable groups such as:
- Rural and urban poor
For those that cannot afford legal services, Legal Aid offers a legal service offering that touches their lives in a positive way. Significantly, Legal Aid deals with the following issues:
- Family matters
- Employment issues
- Contract matters
- Impact litigation
- Criminal cases
Legal Aid on the Internet: who qualifies?
The constitution of South Africa mandates Legal Aid to assist poor persons access legal assistance, paid for by the taxpayer.
Firstly, anyone requiring legal advice will be asked to fill out a form on the internet or physically, giving details such as income, items owned such as homes or vehicles, known as a Means Test. Legal Aid officials are always on hand to assist in completing the form.
Individual Legal Aid
For people who have employment, R5,500 monthly after tax or less is the cut off to qualify
Household Legal Aid
- For a household to qualify,
- You have to live communally 4 days per week
- You must share household costs amongst yourselves
- R6,000 or less in earnings between everyone in the household after tax
Furthermore, if a household or individual own a home, then the belongings within the house and the house itself must be R500,000 in worth or less. Also, only a single house can be owned, and it must be occupied by the applicant.
And if a house is not owned, then the belongings contained within (clothing, furniture, car, various personal items) must have a value of not exceeding R100,000.
Who automatically qualifies for Legal Aid?
- The elderly and those receiving government grants. Importantly, documentation as proof will be required
- Children. For criminal matters, children qualify automatically without requiring to complete a Means Test. But in civil matters, the child’s family will be required to complete and pass a Means Test.
What types of cases does Legal Aid assist with?
First, you have to qualify to receive legal assistance. Once you do, we assist with:
- Criminal matters – cases where there is a suspicion of the commission of a crime
- Civil matters – a dispute between yourself and another person or company
What matters can Legal Aid assist with?
- Criminal offenses
- Consumer protection cases
- Contract law
- Debt disputes
- Estate disputes
- Equality court proceedings (exclusions apply with personal damage claims)
- Benefit payments claims
- Employment claims for example workplace discrimination or unfair dismissal
- Children disputes, divorce, separation
- Suits against the security organs for example wrongful arrest suits
- Local authority challenges
- Housing disputes for example threatened or unfair eviction
- Threatened farm evictions
- Mental health legal advice such as wrongful mental health detention
- Domestic violence
- Civil rights violations
Are there any exclusions to Legal Aid?
Assistance may be denied in certain cases. So you are encouraged to ascertain that you qualify to receive legal assistance. And for those that do qualify, contact Legal Aid South Africa for more information.
All info was correct at time of publishing