Services and Support
Criminal Law Proceedings
We help people facing criminal charges related to their mental illness.
Our lawyers can represent clients in various courts in Western Australia – from local Magistrates Courts to the District and Supreme Courts of WA, as well as in the Children’s Court and specialised courts such as the Drug Court and Start Court.
Can we help you?
If you, or someone you know, meets all of these criteria, we may be able to help:
- a diagnosed mental illness;
- a legal issue related to their mental illness;
- on a low income or experiencing financial hardship and unable to afford the services of a private lawyer; and
- seeking support in the legal areas we service.
How do we help?
If we take your case, our team will provide advice and representation throughout the legal proceedings – at hearings, bail applications, trial, sentencing and appeals (where appropriate).
Our lawyers can appear for you in court and negotiate with the prosecution to have your charges reduced or withdrawn (known as discontinuance), where appropriate.
- If you have pleaded guilty, we may assist you to mitigate the offending and lessen the sentencing outcome. This may include asking for you to be referred to the courts’ diversionary programs. Many of our clients attend Start Court, which is a special support program at Perth Magistrates Court for people with mental illness who are pleading guilty.
- If you have already pleaded not guilty and want to go to trial in court, we can only agree to represent you if a suitable legal defence exists.
We also help clients appeal a court decision where we believe there has been an error in law, or it is in the public interest to challenge the decision.
What legal issues can we help with?
We usually represent clients facing charges such as:
- Trespassing, disorderly conduct and obstruction of Police
- assault and serious assult
- stealing and burglary
- drug-related offences
- breach of bail or police orders
How much time do we need?
We need at least seven days’ notice for all criminal legal matters.
Resources & Education
Fitness to Stand Trial
If a person is accused of a crime, they need to have the mental capacity to understand and take part in the court process.
Work and Development Permit Scheme
The Work and Development Permit (WDP) Scheme helps people experiencing hardship to pay their court fines through means other than financial.