Housing – legal aid deserts

Access to legal aid and early advice can be the difference between a safe home and homelessness. However, many people across the country on low incomes and facing serious housing situations – sometimes on the cusp of eviction – are struggling to get the local face-to-face advice that they’re legally entitled to.

We analysed data from the Legal Aid Agency directory of providers (February 2021) and the Office of National Statistics (2021) and found that in England and Wales:

  • almost 40% of the population of England and Wales do not have a housing legal aid provider in their local authority area, a figure that has grown by around 2% since 2019
  • only 39% of the population have access to more than one provider in their local authority area

A lack of providers can mean services are over-stretched, potentially denying timely advice to those with urgent legal issues.

Click on your local authority to find out how many housing legal aid providers there are:

View the full map

View the full map

We analysed data from the Legal Aid Agency directory of providers (February 2019) and the Office of National Statistics (2017) and found that in England and Wales in 2019:

  • 37% of the population were living in a local authority area with no housing legal aid providers
  • over half of all local authorities were not providing housing legal aid services

Published data is not available in the form of a Directory of Providers for 2013 so the data on which we have based the 2013 map is the number of firms that undertook work that year,

To undertake work a firm has to have a legal aid contract, therefore this gives an indication of the number of firms in each area with a legal aid contract.

Read more on legal aid statistics

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