Here are some common questions we get asked about Baywide Community Law.

If you still have questions or are unsure where to start, please contact us and we’ll point you in the right direction.

Yes, you do need an appointment to receive legal advice from Baywide. Call us and we can determine whether you are eligible for free advice. If you are not eligible, we can give you information and options for support.

We can make you an appointment via phone, Zoom or in-person at our offices in Tauranga and Whakatane or at our fortnightly clinics in Waihi, Katikati, Te Puke, Kawerau and Ōpōtiki.

You can see here what to bring to your appointment Step 3 – what should you bring”

Yes, you can bring a support person with you to an appointment. We realise that legal information can sometimes be technical or unfamiliar, so having a trusted supporter who can help may make it easier to share and remember this information.

We can make you an appointment via phone, Zoom or in-person at our offices in Tauranga and Whakatane or at our fortnightly regional clinics in Waihi, Katikati, Te Puke, Kawerau and Ōpōtiki.

Our premises in Tauranga are wheelchair accessible, as are our regional clinics.

Our premises in Whakatāne are upstairs, however, when we make you an appointment we will ask whether you have any disabilities and we can arrange to use a ground floor room at Eastbay REAP.

Our legal services are provided free of charge. We welcome donations. If you are able to contribute any amount our donation details are here

In some limited situations we will represent a person as their lawyer. We only do this if we have enough resources.

Representation will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

We place a high emphasis on quality service and client care.  We will:

  • Give you clear information and advice
  • Treat you fairly, respectfully and without discrimination
  • Protect your privacy
  • Act competently and do the work on time
  • Follow your instructions
  • Protect and promote your interests
  • Discuss your objectives with you and how you can best achieve them
  • Tell you about the work to be done, who will do it and how they will do it
  • Keep you informed about the work being done and tell you when it is finished
  • Let you know how to make a complaint and deal with any complaint quickly and fairly.

If you are worried about someone finding out that you have visited this website you can find out what to do here.

No, we don’t generally provide Legal Aid services. 

Legal Aid is a scheme run by the Ministry of Justice. It’s government funding to pay for lawyers for people going to court who cannot afford a lawyer. Legal Aid is available for people facing criminal charges, and those with a civil legal problem or family dispute that may go to court, as well as for Waitangi Tribunal proceedings. Baywide Community Law, on the other hand, is an independent charity. Although we receive much of our funding from the Ministry of Justice, we are not a government agency. 

Importantly, our services are free, whereas people often have to repay some or all of their Legal Aid back to the government. If you need a lawyer and can’t afford one, you can come to us for initial free legal help first. We can then refer you to the right Legal Aid lawyer. 

More information on Legal Aid

We can refer you to a lawyer who has the right skills for your kind of legal problem. If you need a lawyer, be aware that they specialise in different areas of law. Some lawyers will charge for an initial meeting so ask about their charges first. You can also find a lawyer near you using the search tool on New Zealand Law Society

There are links to community law resources and websites of other organisations that can assist on our Legal Information page

We can answer questions about what you should include in your will and about the administration of estates after a person has passed away, but we cannot draft or execute a will for you.

We can answer questions about how Enduring Powers of Attorney work, but we cannot draft or execute these documents for you.

Our privacy statement explains how we collect, store and use your personal information, in compliance with the Privacy Act.