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Calculator Help

Get help using the calculator

Technical problems

I keep losing numbers

You must use the calculator's 'next' and 'back' buttons to move through the calculator, rather than your browser’s Forward and Back buttons.

I don’t understand a question

Clicking on the buttons marked “i” will give you some help with answering questions and understanding terms you might not be familiar with.

If you are still having trouble answering questions, you can call us on 08001 225 6653 (from 4p/min), or ask us to call you back.

It looked as if I was halfway through, then suddenly I was at the end

The progress bar shows how far through the calculator you are, but your answer to some questions may mean the calculator can give you a result straight away, even though the progress bar looks as if you are only halfway through.

Who shouldn't use the calculator?

You shouldn’t use the calculator if you or your partner have complex financial circumstances – that is, if you are:

  • self-employed
  • a shareholder in a private limited company
  • a company director
  • a partner in a business partnership.

If you are in one of these groups, you should speak to an adviser, who can tell you whether you qualify for legal aid. You can find a legal adviser in our directory.

You also should not use the calculator if you are:

  • seeking advice and assistance with a criminal case
  • a legal adviser advising a client.

What documents will I need when using the calculator?

You will be asked questions on your income and savings (“capital”), so you will need:

  • wage slips from the last three months
  • records of child-minding fees
  • your benefits book
  • your rent book or mortgage invoices
  • life assurance or endowment policies
  • stocks, bonds and shares details
  • details of trust deeds or trust funds
  • the balance of your bank or building society accounts
  • details of fixed-term investments etc
  • details of maintenance payments.

If you have a partner, you will need to provide their financial details as well.

Why can't it guarantee that I will get legal aid?

The calculator checks if you’re financially eligible for legal aid. Your case will also need to pass a test of merit to make sure it is worth taking to court. Your legal adviser will deal with this for you.

The calculator will also say whether you would have to contribute to your legal costs. If you gain or keep money or property in a civil case with the help of public funding from the LSC, you may have to repay all or some of your legal costs out of that money or property. The money you repay will go towards what your case has cost.

This is known as the ‘statutory charge’. You can find out more about it in our leaflet ‘The Statutory Charge’.

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