Every person who has to file or defend a case shall be entitled to legal services under this Act if that person is –

  • (a) a member of a Scheduled Caste or Scheduled Tribe;
  • (b) a victim of trafficking in human beings or begar as referred to in Article 23 of the Constitution;
  • (c) a woman or a child;
  • (d) a mentally ill or otherwise disabled person;
  • (e) a person under circumstances of undeserved want such as being a victim of a mass disaster, ethnic violence, caste atrocity, flood, drought, earthquake or industrial disaster; or
  • (f) an industrial workman; or
  • (g) in custody, including custody in a protective home within the meaning of clause (g) of Section 2 of the Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, 1956(104 of 1956); or in a juvenile home within the meaning of clause(j) of Section 2 of the Juvenile Justice Act, 1986 (53 of 1986); or in a psychiatric hospital or psychiatric nursing home within the meaning of clause (g) of Section 2 of the Mental Health Act, 1987 (14 of 1987); or
  • In addition to the persons mentioned in clauses (a) to (g) of Section 12, a citizen
    of India whose annual income from all sources does not exceed two lakhs rupees
    shall be entitled to legal services if the case is before a Court other than the Supreme Court.(The amount amended and increased to 3 Lakhs)
  • The ceiling of annual income as mentioned above shall not be applicable to –
    • Transgender and persons living with HIV or AIDS
    • Senior Citizens (persons above sixty years of age)


  • Persons who satisfy all or any of the criteria specified in Section 12 shall be entitled to receive legal services provided that the concerned Authority is satisfied that such person has a prima-facie case to prosecute or to defend.
  • An affidavit made by a person as to his income may be regarded as sufficient for making him eligible to the entitlement of legal services under this Act unless the concerned Authority has reason to disbelieve such affidavit.