Get free legal advice

Let’s work together to defend wildlife, people and places.

If eligible, our lawyers can provide free preliminary legal advice. Sometimes this initial service can progress to more detailed advice or legal representation.

Before making an application please check what you can and can’t get legal advice for.

We can provide legal advice for issues relating to:

  • Public interest planning
  • Environmental law

These issues usually include:

  • Development and infrastructure e.g. dams, roads, tunnels, large-scale urban developments
  • Mining, fracking and energy e.g. coal, coal seam gas and power stations
  • Native Vegetation clearing and logging e.g. land clearing and forestry
  • Corporate and government conduct e.g. decision making, access to information
  • Water regulation and use e.g. irrigation, rivers, wetlands, drinking water
  • Pollution and Contamination of land and water e.g. PFAS, lead

There are some issues that we can’t provide legal advice on. Such as:

  • Neighbourhood disputes (including tree and fence disputes)
  • Noise and odour pollution
  • Issues involving property damage or amenity (such as views and access to light)
  • Private development application queries 
  • Aerial spraying of chemicals, baiting and pesticides
  • Native Title matters

Get online legal resources that may help

On this page:

“Our legal advice process” has more on:

  • how we use the information we collect
  • how the application process works

Our lawyers can provide preliminary legal advice on public interest planning and environmental law matters to people in all Australian States or Territories. If your concern relates to the Pacific Region, apply and we can refer you to one of our local partners there.

We aim to respond to all applications within five (5) business days. If your application is more complex or there are many applications, our response might take longer. If there’s an urgent timeframe, include this in your application to us, but you may need private legal advice.

Making an application for legal advice as soon as possible will help us respond to you in time. Any information shared in your application is:

  • Confidential
  • Required to understand your request
  • Used to determine if we can provide assistance
  • Required to check if we have a conflict of interest (have provided advice to another group or person on the same matter)

The more detail you can provide in your application, the easier it will be for us to process and respond quickly.

Please be aware that we are a small team and there’s high demand for our services so we may not be able to advise you. If we can’t advise you, we will do our best to provide you with information and/or refer you to someone who may assist with your concern. around certain environmental matters.

  1. Complete your online application
    The application form collects all the information we need to understand if we can provide legal advice.
  2. Your application is processed by our intake team
    First we do a conflict check, if we have no conflicts, we will assess whether we can advise you. Our national intake team will contact you, by phone or email, if we have more questions about your application.
  3. You are contacted by one of our solicitors
    Once we have all the information we need, one of our solicitors will usually contact you within five business days. If you have told us there is a deadline, we will do our best to contact you ahead of that time, but be aware we may not be able to. The solicitor will provide you with free initial legal advice. You can discuss next steps e.g. detailed written advice or potential litigation, with the solicitor also.
If you identify as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander or are from a non-English speaking background

If you prefer to speak a language other than English, we will use an interpreter to understand your concern and provide legal advice, if possible.

How do we assess your application?

Once you submit your application, we aim to respond to you within five business days.

By submitting an application, you are requesting legal advice. This does not create a client agreement with us.

We are a small team and receive many requests for advice. When assessing applications, we consider:

  • Do we have the expertise to assist?
  • Does this align with our Strategic Plan?
  • Do we have capacity to assist?
  • Is the person a priority client?

Priority clients include:

  • people that identify as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander
  • people dealing with financial disadvantage, people younger than 24, or older than 65 years
  • from regional or remote Australia

If you are part of a community group, you will need to decide on a representative to apply for and get advice on behalf of your group.

We cannot provide advice to law firms or companies.

We can only provide legal advice to the person it relates to, if you’re looking for advice on someone’s behalf, we will need their written permission first.

  • What is the planning process for different types of development?
  • How do I write a submission to the government?
  • Do I have appeal rights?
  • Can I represent myself in Court?
  • How can I access government information?
  • What can I do to protect Country and culture?
  • What do I need to know to organise a protest and protest safely?
  • How do I report illegal clearing of native vegetation?