This includes where a person is without conventional accommodation (e.g. sleeping in a park or a car), moving frequently between temporary accommodation (e.g. refuges/emergency housing or friends) or living in marginal accommodation on a medium to long term basis (e.g. rooming houses, transitional housing or caravan parks).
At risk of homelessness includes where a person has circumstances (e.g. mental ill-health, age, financial hardship or family violence) or a legal issue that make it difficult to access or maintain secure accommodation.
We focus on preventing evictions for example:
Where 50% or more of the person’s infringements are directly related to their homelessness we can help them to have the fines waived. Some of the common fines our clients get are:
We provide assistance to people who want to change or amend a guardianship or administration order, or are facing an application for such an order. Often people who are on these orders will have the State Trustees (in the case of an administration order) or the Office of the Public Advocate (for a guardianship order) who makes financial and/or lifestyle decisions on their behalf.
We help with credit and debt issues such as:
We cannot assist with family law matters.
If you need help for a legal problem that is not listed above, we recommend contacting the Victoria Legal Aid advice line on 1300 792 387 or your local community legal service who may be able to assist (find your local CLC). You can also use our program sorter to see if another Justice Connect service can help.
Eligible clients will be booked into one of Homeless Law’s six weekly outreach clinics and can receive ongoing legal representation, including advice, negotiation and representation at courts and VCAT.
Homeless Law provides specialise legal representation to Victorian prisoners relating to housing and tenancy matters, particularly evictions, temporary absences and housing debts.
A criminal lawyer is available to provide advice and representation to existing Homeless Law clients facing criminal charges in the Magistrates’ Court (subject to certain eligibility criteria).
The HPLO can assist people who are homeless or at risk, and who have matters in the Victorian Courts/Tribunals to access the justice system and address non-legal needs.