Legal Aid is a system run by the Scottish Legal Aid Board (known as “SLAB”) in Edinburgh. If you pass their tests, then you might be able to get some help with the legal fees involved with your case.
Generally, SLAB need to know if you’re financially eligible. In some cases they may want to know if you have a good enough case.
Bring along wage slips or benefit award letters and bank or building society statements to prove your financial position. SLAB say we need to see this. If you have a bank, building society or post office account, we’ll need to give SLAB the account details, so make sure you have them with you when you come into the office.
The Legal Aid Schemes can cover office work, advice, investigations and negotiations (the Advice and Assistance Scheme) or it can cover going to court in a criminal or a civil case (Full Legal Aid). We can tell you right away if you’re eligible for Advice and Assistance. The SLAB (or the Court in a few cases) work out whether you’re eligible for Full Legal Aid, but we can usually give you an idea whether it’s worth going through the application procedure.
Depending on your income, you may have something to pay towards your legal fees before SLAB start picking up the tab, and if you recover or preserve any money or property as a result of the advice, or case, then SLAB will expect the amount they pay for your legal fees to come out of that money or property except in some limited circumstances.