Cost leaves Aussies without legal aid

CHRONIC under-funding of legal aid services was preventing many Australians from getting help each year, a report by the Community Law Australia revealed on Monday.

Analysis by the legal aid sector showed about 500,000 Australians were missing out of legal help when they needed it most.

CLA spokesman Hugh de Kretser said on Monday that a crisis emerged in the legal services sectors caused by high fees and chronic funding shortfalls in legal aid.

"An estimated 500,000 Australians each year are missing out on the legal help they need, mainly for financial reasons," he said.

"People don't budget for legal fees for issues like marriage breakdown, unfair dismissal, eviction, discrimination, getting ripped off or debt problems."

He said the government could no longer ignore the crisis, calling for more funding to support community legal aid centres around the country.

Topics:  legal aid

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