What is Homeless Law’s eligibility criteria?

The eligibility criteria for our Homeless Law program is outlined below. Alternatively, you can download a printable version of the criteria:

Homeless Law eligibility guide – August 2022Download PDF (746 KB)

Please note, this information is only a guide. Justice Connect’s Homeless Law supports are also subject to merits and means tests and service capacity. Please contact Justice Connect’s Homeless Law to determine whether eligibility criteria are satisfied.

Is the person experiencing or at risk of homelessness in Victoria?

Experiencing homelessness 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 makes it difficult to access or maintain secure accommodation.

Does the legal matter fall within our areas of expertise?

Tenancy and housing

Focusing on homelessness prevention, particularly:

  • Defending a notice to vacate (NTV) and Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) eviction proceedings
  • Tenancies impacted by family violence
  • Defending compliance order applications
  • Defending landlord compensation/housing debt claims
  • Creation and transfer of a tenancy

Fines and infringements

Where 50% or more of the person’s fines are directly related to their homelessness, including:

  • Public transport fines
  • Being drunk in public
  • Begging
  • Littering
  • Unregistered vehicle or parking fines

Consumer debts

  • Utilities and telco debts
  • Consumer credit issues with financial institutions
  • Payday-lender debts
  • Debt collectors chasing people for payment.

If you answered yes to both of the above questions, the person may be eligible for free legal help.

Eligible clients will be booked into one of Homeless Law’s outreach clinics and can receive ongoing legal representation, including advice, negotiation, and representation at courts and VCAT.

  Unfortunately, we cannot assist with family law matters.

Justice Connect’s Homeless Law cannot assist with family law matters, but we can help victim-survivors with rentals affected by family violence.

If you need help with family law or another legal problem that is not listed above, we recommend contacting the Victoria Legal Aid legal help line on 1300 792 387, or your local community legal service who may be able to assist.

You can also answer a few questions to see if another Justice Connect service can help.

Do you know someone facing homelessness who needs free legal help?

Legal help can make a real difference to people experiencing or at risk of homelessness in Victoria. You can make a referral to Justice Connect’s Homeless Law: Victoria’s specialist free legal service for people experiencing or at risk of homelessness.

Make a referral now

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