FAQs

FAQs 2017-09-07T00:07:00+00:00

We have compiled a list of frequently asked questions for your reference.

We do not charge our clients a fee for our services. We are a non-profit community organisation. In certain matters you may be required to pay money to third parties, for example filing fees to the Local Court. You will be responsible for making these payments as the Centre does not operate a trust account and is not able to hold or pay any money on behalf of clients.
You should not record a Centre Solicitor as a representative in your matter, for example on an unfair dismissal application or on Court documents unless you are instructed that the Centre will be providing you with such assistance.

Community Legal Centres (CLCs) and Legal Aid both provide advice, case work and legal education to socially and economically disadvantaged people. CLCs are independent, not-for-profit, community-based organisations. CLCs are run by a committee of local community members and have the added benefit of being able to respond to local issues more flexibly. CLCs do not have a formal means test and are able to assist clients that may not be eligible for Legal Aid. Legal Aid NSW is overseen by a Board appointed by the NSW Attorney General.

Centre Administrators will usually be your first point of contact. They will record details including your name, date of birth, the name of the other party, English proficiency, income bracket, your problem type and your country of birth. Your matter will then be allocated to a Centre Solicitor suitably qualified to give you advice on that particular area of law.
We collect this information so we can get an understanding of our clients and how we can best serve them with our resources. We also perform a conflict check using the other person’s name to first make sure that we haven’t already helped the other person. If we have not seen the other person, we can help you.
No. To give clients the best service, we can only help one side. This is because the information you give us is confidential and we won’t be able to act in your best interest if we are also advising the other side.
No. We need to receive information such as your name so we can perform a conflict check.
Yes, we provide confidential advice to clients. We will only ever contact the other party in your matter if we have your explicit consent. For example, we may contact the other party to assist with negotiating your matter or request further information. We will not disclose what you have said to us.
The Centre may in some circumstances represent clients before Courts or Tribunals. However you should not assume that a Centre Solicitor will represent you just because you have received advice from them in the past.
We do not have a unified means test for all our services. We may take into account some of the following factors when determining if we can assist clients:

  1. Client’s income
  2. Client’s geographic area
  3. Whether we can provide advice on the specific area of law

WSCLC actively encourages our stakeholders, clients and service users to provide us with feedback, suggestions or complaints. You may do so in writing (please email contact@wsclc.org.au) or verbally to the staff member you saw, the supervising staff member, the Director, or the Management Committee.

WSCLC is committed to ensuring that any person using WSCLC services has the right to lodge a complaint or to appeal a decision of WSCLC and to have their concerns addressed in ways that ensure access and equity, fairness, accountability and transparency.

The WSCLC complaints process:

  1. A staff member will inform you that your complaint has been received.
  2. Your complaint will be examined within 7 days of receipt.
  3. Your complaint will be investigated and a resolution will be sought. The Director, the Principal Solicitor, or the Supervising Solicitors will be responsible for handling the complaint.
  4. You may be contacted for more information. You have the right to a support person at any stage of the complaints process. Support people may include a friend, advocate, community elder or an interpreter if required.
  5. You will be informed of the outcome.
  6. If you are not satisfied with the investigation and proposed resolution of your complaint, you can seek a further review of the matter by the Management Committee. If you are still not satisfied with the outcome, you may be referred to an external body (such as the funding body).

Your complaint will be dealt with:

Seriously,
Quickly,
Confidentially and
Without affecting your right to get more help from the Centre.

Click here to view the full WSCLC Client Complaints Policy.