Legal Aid Terms and Conditions 


What is Legal Aid?


Legal Aid is an essential part of our legal system supporting access to justice.  It is a government service which provides legal services for people who cannot afford them.


Where legal Aid is granted payment of legal fees is made directly to Kaimai Law Bethlehem as your approved legal aid lawyer.


If you have made an appointment to see us regarding Legal Aid please provide your proof of income and government issued photo ID (Passport, drivers licence) at your first appointment.


If you qualify for Legal Aid you will be informed by the Legal Services Agency of the fee that has been approved for our services and any contribution or other obligations you may have.  If you apply and your application for Legal Aid is declined, Kaimai Law Bethlehem will seek payment of its reasonable fees at the author’s usual hourly rate, plus GST and disbursements, from you directly.


Legal Aid User Charge


 A user charge fee of $50.00 (including GST) has been introduced for some family and civil legal aid cases.  This is the only payment that we receive directly from you.


The user charge fee has been introduced to encourage people to resolve disputes out of court where appropriate.


There are some matters that don't require a user charge please click here for more information.



At present we are able to offer legal aid in the following areas:


Family Legal Aid

- Private Mediation

- Adoption

- Children & Young Persons (CYP)

- Day-to-day Care & Contact/Guardianship

- Domestic Violence

- Family Proceedings/Guardianship

- Mental Health

- Paternity

- Personal Property Rights

- Property Relationships

for more information click here


- Family Legal Advice Service - for more information regarding the changes to Day-to-day care and contact and guardianship matters please click here.  Before asking the Family Court to help you agree about caring for your children, (by asking for a Parenting Order or the court to vary (change) a Parenting Order) you may need to have taken part in Parenting Through Separation.


Civil Legal Aid

- Private disputes where Court proceedings are possible

- Employment

- Warrants of Commitment

- Review Tribunals

- Immigration and Protection Tribunal


- Refugee and Protected Persons

for more information click here


Pamphlets on the above are available from the Family Court Web site.


The programme is run by the Legal Services Agency (LSA).


Will I have to Repay any of the Legal Aid

The LSA may put conditions on a grant of legal aid.  These may include:


- Repaying aid from the proceeds of the case

- Authorising a charge on property


Can a grant of legal aid be withdrawn?

Legal Aid may be withdrawn in certain circumstances like your financial circumstances change but also if conditions of the legal aid are not met.


Can I get legal aid?

The Legal Services Agency decides who gets legal aid based on the clients financial circumstances and the merits of their case.  There are different financial thresholds for legal aid, depending on your circumstances.


Please contact our office or see the LSA web site for more details.


Fees for Family Court Services (as at 1 July 2012)

New fees are being introduced to ensure that those using the court contribute to its cost.

All fees must be pre-paid.  If you cannot afford one of these fees you can apply to the court to cancel (waive) the fee.  For more information please click here.


New Fees (All fees include GST)

Application for a Parenting Order     $220.00

Application to change or cancel a parenting order     $220.00

Application relating to relationship property     $700.00

Hearing fees (only apply to relationship property matters)     $906.00 (per half day)


Exisitng fee

Application to dissolve a marriage or civil union (divorce)     $211.50


For more information please see the Ministry of Justice Web Site - Court Fees section.

Applications for Waiver, Refund and Postponement of Fees

Applications for waiver, refund and/or postponement of a court fee should be made on the relevant approved application form.

Where the applicant is an individual who has been granted legal aid, is waiting on a decision in respect of an application for legal aid, is in receipt of a benefit or has previously been granted a fee waiver in respect of the same proceedings please use the form below.



Financial eligibility for legal aid

Legal aid for civil matters: maximum levels of income (subject to change)

  • (1) The maximum levels of income for the purposes of determining an applicant's eligibility for legal aid in respect of a civil matter are—
    • (a) $22,366 per year for a single applicant:
    • (b) $35,420 per year for an applicant with—
      • (i) a spouse or partner; or
      • (ii) 1 dependent child:
    • (c) $50,934 per year for an applicant with—
      • (i) a spouse or partner, and 1 dependent child; or
      • (ii) 2 dependent children:
    • (d) $57,880 per year for an applicant with—
      • (i) a spouse or partner, and 2 dependent children; or
      • (ii) 3 dependent children:
    • (e) $64,678 per year for an applicant with—
      • (i) a spouse or partner, and 3 dependent children; or
      • (ii) 4 dependent children:
    • (f) $72,302 per year for an applicant with—
      • (i) a spouse or partner, and 4 dependent children; or
      • (ii) 5 dependent children.

(2) If an applicant has more than 5 dependent children, or has a spouse or partner and more than 4 dependent children, the maximum level of income for that applicant is calculated by adding to the amount specified in subclause (1)(f) a further $6,689 for each additional child.


 For further information click here


Legal Aid Application Forms












 For more legal aid application forms please click here


For more information see the Ministry of Justice web site:

Contact Us

Tauranga - 243 State Highway 2, Bethlehem, Tauranga, New Zealand
PO Box 16010, Bethlehem, Tauranga, 3147, Email:,
Ph: 07 579 2350    Fax: 07 579 1560   Skype:  kaimailawbethlehem                                      Kaimai Law Limited trading as Kaimai Law Bethlehem