Entitlement of Legal Services- Any citizen of India whose annual income from all sources does not exceed Rs.50,000/-** (Rupees Fifty Thousand ) or such higher amount as may be notified by State Government from time to time, shall be entitled to legal services under clause (h) of Section 12 of the Act : The State Legal Services Authority, High Court Legal Services Committee, District Legal Services Authority and the SubDivisional Legal Services Committee, as the case may be, may grant legal services to any other person irrespective of his income :- (a) To a member of Scheduled Caste or Scheduled Tribe or Backward Classes ; (b) To a victim of trafficking in human begins or beggar as referred in Article 23 of the Constitution ; (c) To a Woman ; (d) To a child, i.e. Person who has not attained the age of 18 years or if he is under guardianship under the Guardians and Wards Act, 1890 the age of 21 years ; (e) To a person with disability as defined in clause (i) of Section 2 of the Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities Protection of Rights and Full Participation ) Act, 1995 (1) of 1996) *** ; (f) To a person, under circumstances of undeserved want such as being victim of a mass disaster, ethnic violence, caste atrocity, flood, drought, earthquake or industrial disaster ; or (g) To an industrial workman ; or (h) To a person in custody, including custody in a protective home within the meaning of clause (g) of Section 2 of the Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, 1956, or in a children’s home, observation home, shelter home and special home within the meaning of clauses (e), (o), (u) and (v) respectively of section 2 of Juvenile Justice ( Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000. * (i) To a person in a psychiatric hospital or psychiatric nursing home within the meaning of clause (q) of section 2 of the Mental Health Act, 1987; or (j) In a test case, the decision of which is likely to effect cases of numerous other persons belonging to the poor and weaker sections of the society ; or (k) To a person, in a special case, which for reasons to be recorded in writing is considered otherwise deserving of legal service where the means test is not satisfied ; or (l) To a person in the case where the High Court or the Supreme Court provides legal service under any order in that case legal service would be deemed to have been provided by the Authority / Committee in relaxation of all the conditions laid down in this rule ; or (m) To a person in case of public interest litigation.?

Nature of Free Legal Services

Free legal services entail the provision of free legal aid in civil and criminal matters for those poor and marginalized people 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. Provision of free legal aid may include:

  • Representation by an Advocate in legal proceedings.
  • Preparation of pleadings, memo of appeal, paper book including printing and translation of documents in legal proceedings;
  • Drafting of legal documents, special leave petition etc.
  • Rendering of any service in the conduct of any case or other legal proceeding before any court or other Authority or tribunal and;
  • Giving of advice on any legal matter.
  • Representation by an Advocate 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.

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