Legal Aid

  1. What is legal aid?
Legal Aid implies giving free legal services to the poor and needy who cannot afford the services of a lawyer for the conduct of a case or a legal proceeding in any court, tribunal or before an authority. Legal Aid is the method adopted to ensure that no one is deprived of professional advice and help because of lack of funds. Therefore, the main object is to provide equal justice be made available to the poor, down trodden and weaker section of society.


  1. What is included in free legal services/aid provided by the Legal Services Authorities?
These services are governed by Legal Services Authorities Act, 1987 and headed by the National Legal Services Authority (NALSA).
Provision of free legal aid may include:
    1. Representation by an Advocate in legal proceedings.
    2. Payment of process fees, expenses of witnesses and all other charges payable or incurred in connection with any legal proceedings in appropriate cases;
    3. Preparation of pleadings, memo of appeal, paper book including printing and translation of documents in legal proceedings;
    4. Drafting of legal documents, special leave petition etc.
    5. Supply of certified copies of Judgments,orders, notes of evidence and other documents in legal proceedings.
Free Legal Services also include provision of aid and advice to the beneficiaries to access the benefits under the welfare statutes and schemes framed by the Central Government or the State Government and to ensure access to justice in any other manner.
According to Section 2(c) of the Legal Services Authorities Act, 1987, “legal services” includes any service in the conduct of any case or other legal proceeding before any court or other authority or tribunal and the giving of advice on any legal matter.


  1. Who are Entitled to Free Legal Services?
The sections of the society as enlisted under Section 12 of the Legal Services Authorities Act are entitled for free legal services, they are :
    1. A member of a Scheduled Caste or Scheduled Tribe;
    2. A victim of trafficking in human beings or begar as referred to in Article 23 of the Constitution;
    3. A woman or a child;
    4. A mentally ill or otherwise disabled person;
    5. A person under circumstances of undeserved want such as being a victim of a mass disaster, ethnic violence, caste atrocity, flood, drought, earthquake or industrial disaster; or
    6. An industrial workman; or
    7. In custody, including custody in a protective home within the meaning of clause (g) of Section 2 of the Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, 1956(104 of 1956); or in a juvenile home within the meaning of clause(j) of Section 2 of the Juvenile Justice Act, 1986 (53 of 1986); or in a psychiatric hospital or psychiatric nursing home within the meaning of clause (g) of Section 2 of the Mental Health Act, 1987(14 of 1987);or
The Income Ceiling Limit prescribed u/S 12(h) of the Act for availing free legal services in Madhya Pradesh is Rs. 2,00,000/-