QPILCH's Self Representation Service provides free legal advice and assistance to self-represented parties throughout the course of their proceedings in the Supreme and District Courts of Queensland, the Queensland Court of Appeal, the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal, the Federal Circuit Court and the Federal Court.
QPILCH is a not-for-profit community legal centre that is independent of government and the courts.
- What the Self Representation Service does
- Aims of the Self Representation Service
- Who the Self Representation Service helps
- How the Self Representation Service works
- Firms which support the Self Representation Service
What the Self Representation Service does
The service offers appointments (in person or by telephone) of up to one hour with solicitors who provide advice and assistance with discrete tasks, including:
- advice about whether, and how, to commence or defend proceedings;
- advice about court and tribunal processes;
- assistance to draft documents such as applications, statements of claim, defences, affidavits, submissions and court and tribunal forms;
- assistance with preparing for trial and appearing in court;
- advice about appealing court and tribunal decisions;
- referral for pro bono mediation; and
- advice about other options for the resolution of disputes.
Generally all applicants will be provided at least one appointment. Ongoing assistance will be determined by the merits of the case, needs of the applicant and capacity of QPILCH to assist.
Aims of the Self Representation Service
The service aims to help self-represented parties to:
- understand the law and the rights and perspective of the other party;
- observe court and tribunal rules and procedures;
- prepare documentation required to pursue or respond to legal proceedings;
- be aware of potential orders and the effect of not complying with orders;
- present their case in the best possible manner; and
- to relieve the stress of litigants by providing problem-solving skills.
Who the Self Representation Service helps
The service helps people who are involved in, or who are considering commencing legal proceedings, and who are unable to afford private legal assistance and are ineligible for legal aid.
Please download an information brochure (linked above right) for more information about eligibility for assistance in the court or tribunal relevant to you.
There is no limit to the number of appointments a person may receive throughout the progress of their legal proceedings.
How the Self Representation Service works
Self-represented parties who would like assistance from the service need to complete and submit a QPILCH Application Form (at the top on the right hand side of this page) and agree to the terms and conditions (the last link under Information brochures).
QPILCH staff review applications received and contact eligible self-represented parties to arrange an appointment with a solicitor. Face-to-face appointments are offered at QPILCH offices located in the tribunal and courts. Telephone appointments are offered to people living outside of Brisbane.
Appointments are staffed by QPILCH solicitors and solicitors from QPILCH member firms who volunteer their time to staff appointments on a pro bono basis.
If a person is not eligible for assistance, they will be notified of our reasons in writing.
Firms which support the Self Representation Service
- Barry Nilsson
- Bartley Cohen
- Clayton Utz
- Cooper Grace Ward
- Corrs Chambers Westgarth
- Crown Law
- DLA Piper
- HWL Ebsworth
- Hynes Legal
- K&L Gates
- King & Wood Mallesons
- McCullough Robertson
- McInnes Wilson
- Minter Ellison
- Norton Rose Fulbright Australia
- Piper Alderman
- Shine Lawyers
- TressCox Lawyers
Lawyers who attend the clinics do so as volunteers of QPILCH and not as a lawyer of the firm that employs them.