Giving security for your contribution
Can I use property (land) as security for my contribution?
If you are asked to make a contribution under your grant of aid, Legal Aid WA may be willing to accept a security over a property you own instead of making you pay a cash contribution. Legal Aid WA can also accept a security over a property that is owned by someone else who supports you, if they agree.
Legal Aid WA will not ask or force you to sell the property to pay the contribution. The security allows you to pay off the contribution at any time. If you sell, transfer or borrow against the property, you will need to pay the contribution owing under your grant of aid.
Legal Aid WA does not accept personal items (such as cars or jewellery) as collateral or security for a contribution.
What is a memorial?
If you own a property, Legal Aid WA can ask you to provide security for your contribution by giving us a memorial against your property. A memorial gives us a claim against the property to cover your legal costs.
When the memorial is registered with Landgate, it acts as an encumbrance on the property, even if it is sold or transferred. The Landgate fees for registering and removing the memorial are added to the amount of your contribution.
If you already have a mortgage over your property, you should check with your bank before agreeing to give a memorial to Legal Aid WA. If you don’t get permission from your bank before signing the memorial, you may breach the conditions of your mortgage/loan.
What is a caveat?
If someone who gives you financial support own a property, they can provide security for your contribution by agreeing that Legal Aid WA can put a caveat against their property. The caveat is registered with Landgate and is a notice that Legal Aid WA has a claim against the property.
Landgate will tell us if the property is going to be sold or transferred. The Landgate fees for registering and removing the caveat are added to the amount of your contribution.
How do I remove a memorial or caveat?
When you have paid the contribution in full (including any Landgate fees), we will lodge forms to remove the memorial or caveat. The fees that Landgate charges us to remove memorials or caveats from the Certificate of Title are added to the amount of your contribution and must be paid before we will send the forms to Landgate.
You can pay the contribution at any time, even if you are not selling the property. We do not force you to pay by instalments.
You should contact us if you plan to sell, transfer or borrow against the property, or want to remove a security. We will tell you how much the total contribution will be and discuss how it can be paid.
Does Legal Aid WA charge other fees or interest on the contribution?
The only fees we charge are those that we have to pay to Landgate to register and remove a memorial or caveat against land.
Legal Aid WA does not charge interest on contributions.
What if I expect to receive a settlement from my case?
If you expect to receive a cash settlement, property or damages from your case, it is very likely that you will need to make a final contribution at the end of your case. If you don’t currently own any property to use as security, Legal Aid WA might want to be paid the final contribution before you are given the rest of the money. This is done by asking you to sign an irrevocable authority – you give permission (authority) for the contribution to be paid directly to Legal Aid WA from your settlement/award and you cannot cancel (revoke) the authority.
Reviewed: 27 April 2018