Volunteer Legal Assistants
Volunteer Legal Assistants build skills in communicating with the public, assisting people in crisis, and client interviewing. They also increase their knowledge of referral services and the practical application and constraints of the law.
1. Legal Information and Referral
Legal Assistants staff the front office and respond to the requests of the public, clients and RLC staff. Legal Assistants provide legal information and referrals to other organisations. Legal Assistants may be required to provide non-legal referrals and assistance such as help filling in forms.
2. Client Intake and Interviewing
Legal Assistants will ascertain the nature of enquiries, interview the client in preparation for their solicitor interview and create client appointments.
3. Casework Follow-up
Legal Assistants draft letters and documents, contact clients, other solicitors, courts, government and community agencies and conduct research to support ongoing casework.
4. Additional Duties
Legal Assistants help with administrative reception work including answering phones, delivering and collecting files and documents, faxing, photocopying, filing and maintaining legal information supplies.
Commitment and further opportunities - general intake
Volunteer Legal Assistants work one half-day shift per week, for a minimum of twelve months. (We understand that holidays and time off for exams may take place within the twelve months).
- Morning shifts are Monday to Friday 9am-1pm.
- Afternoon shifts are Monday to Thursday 2pm-6pm and Friday 2pm-5pm.
You will need to offer us at least 3 possible shifts, preferably 5, and we will roster you on to one of those.
Legal Assistants must also attend two compulsory training sessions at Redfern Legal Centre.
RLC requires a commitment of a minimum of twelve months at RLC. However, after at least six months staffing the front office, a Legal Assistant can apply to transfer to another volunteer role at RLC to finish the twelve months. Roles that may be available from time to time include:
- Evening advice assistant: Assist the solicitors who give advice to the public.
- Volunteer tenancy advisor: Provide tenancy advice to the public, under the supervision of an RLC Tenant Advocate.
- Women's Domestic Violence Volunteer: Assist the staff of RLC's Women's Domestic Violence Court Advocacy Service, at the Downing Centre Local Court.
How to apply
University of Sydney Social Justice Legal Clinic
USYD students can enrol in a Social Justice Legal Clinic subject and earn course credit as a Volunteer Legal Assistant for one day per week for a semester. Do not apply directly to RLC - you must apply via the university. More information: University of Sydney Social Justice Legal Clinic.