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Legal information for Aboriginal people

Find information about the law for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

Getting HelpHands of two aboriginal men shaking

The Aboriginal Legal Service (ALS) is an Aboriginal community organisation giving information, referral, legal advice, and court representation to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men, women and children across NSW and the ACT. 

ALS works in criminal law, children’s care and protection law and family law.  They also run the Custody Notification Service, a 24-hour legal advice and RU OK phone line for Aboriginal people taken into police custody. 

If you need a lawyer, please contact the ALS on one of these toll free numbers:

  • for police charges and court matters call 1800 765 767
  • for care and protection and family matters 1800 733 233.

LawAccess NSW 

LawAccess NSW is a free service that provides legal information, advice and referrals for people who have a legal problem in NSW.

They have Aboriginal staff who can talk to you about your legal problem and also connect you with other services, including Aboriginal Legal Services, if ​you need more help.

Find contact details, how LawAccess can help, and what types of legal problems they can help you with on their A​re you Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander and Need Legal Help? page.

Anti-Discrimination Board of NSW 

The Anti-Discrimination Board of NSW has an Outreach Program staffed by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people which provides a culturally appropriate service for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. 


Your money

MoneySmart

ASIC's MoneySmart website has information for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, including videos and Indigenous money tips.

The Mob Strong Debt Help service is part of the Financial Rights Legal Centre. They provide free telephone legal advice about credit, debt, banking and insurance.

Centrelink provides payments and support to help Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians.


Your rent

Tenants' Union of NSW

For information about your rights as an Aboriginal tenant, you can call your local Aboriginal Tenants Advice and Advocacy Service

On the Aboriginal renters page you will find news, resources and fact sheets covering topics including the rental bond, when you start renting, repairs, avoiding problems when renting, if your landlord wants to end your agreement, and the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal (NCAT).


Your work

Fair Work Ombudsman - Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander peoples

Find fact sheets and videos for Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander peoples about starting a new job, your rights and entitlements, taking time off for Sorry Business, sorting out problems at work, and ending work.


Read more

Legal Aid NSW has a range of pamphlets and fact sheets designed specifically for Aboriginal people. Click on the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander publications topic.

Topics covered include fines, caring for children, kids in care, family law, and wills.

The Law Handbook

The Law handbook: your practical guide to the law in NSW is the single most important plain English guide to the law in NSW. It provides a practical guide to 40 legal topics – legal issues which affect people in their everyday lives.

Read chapter 2: Aboriginal people and the law 

This book is also available in every public library in NSW.

Planning ahead

NSW Trustee and Guardian has published two guides to Aboriginal planning ahead. The Aboriginal wills handbook and its companion booklet Taking care of business enable Aboriginal people to make culturally appropriate planning ahead documents. 

They give specific information to help in the preparation of an Aboriginal person’s will, eg how to provide for kinship, burial, and secret knowledge.