Legal Aid Commission (Fiji)
The Legal Aid Commission (the “Commission”) is a Statutory Body formed under the Legal Aid Act 1996 (the “Act”) and the Legal Aid Amendment Decree 2009. The Commission was established in July 1998 to provide legal services to those who could not afford the services of a private legal practitioner.
The 2013 Fijian Constitution gives the Legal Aid Commission constitutional recognition, guarantees its operational independence, and ensures adequate funding by Parliament.
The Commission provides free legal services to members of the public by giving advice, providing legal representation in court and other related services. Currently, the Commission provides service in all areas of Family law and criminal law. Assistance is provided in civil law matters but these are limited to certain areas of practice only. Assistance through the Legal Aid scheme is given to an individual upon the fulfilment of the eligibility criteria.
The Director is the Head of Department and over-sees all operational functions, while the Commission Board over-sees policy matters.
The Commission is funded through an annual grant from the Government.
To provide free legal services to those people who are unable to afford the services of a private legal practitioner.
To provide access to justice through professional, efficient and quality legal aid services.
To provide greater access to justice through quality legal aid services:
To those who are unable to afford such assistance, including women, children and those with special needs;
By raising awareness on legal rights and the Constitutional right of access to legal aid services;
By creating a work environment whereby the Legal Aid Commission becomes an employer of choice and provides professional, efficient and quality services.
By making representations to Government on legal aid matters.
By ensuring that the Legal Aid Commission operates in accordance with best international practice.See more