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As a British citizen: If I can't afford to pay a solicitor to get legal advice, am I entitled to free legal advice from the government?

  • Under what circumstances? The answers differ based on the situation. – cpast Jul 30 '15 at 16:17
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    In certain conditions yes, see gov.uk/legal-aid, but in general I presume not. I'm not sure in which cases this is a "legal right" and in which cases it's simply a service that the government provides. – Nate Eldredge Jul 30 '15 at 16:20
  • Also, it varies by jurisdiction (England and Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland) – cpast Jul 30 '15 at 16:25
  • Yes you are entitled to legal advice. You are also entitled to pay for it. – Dale M Jul 31 '15 at 3:41
  • There is a right to a fair trial, under article six of the European convention on human rights. In some circumstances it might be argued that if you are forced to go through a trial without an opportunity to get advice that you need then this right is infringed. – bdsl Jul 31 '15 at 21:14
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It depends on the circumstances, see here.

You’ll usually need to show that:

  • your case is eligible for legal aid

  • the problem is serious

  • you can’t afford to pay for legal costs

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