Legal Advice for potential Victims of Human Trafficking
Trafficking in Human Beings is a crime. In Irish law it is an offence under the Criminal Law (Human Trafficking) Act 2008. From time to time, the Garda Síochána (the Irish police) identify people as "potential victims" of human trafficking. When this happens, they are referred to various support services, including the Legal Aid Board.
Advice service for potential victims of human trafficking
If you are identified as a potential victim of human trafficking, we can provide you with provide free legal advice in relation to the following:
- your status in Ireland and the measures set out in the Administrative Immigration Arrangements which provide for recovery and reflection and temporary residence, as well as applications for leave to remain in the State;
- seeking redress through the employment protection legislation (legal advice only);
- information on what is involved in a criminal trial for a victim/witness;
- information on compensation;
- information on voluntary return home;
- criminal matters related to the trafficking offence.
If you have or do apply for asylum, we can provide legal advice and legal representation in relation to your application, but you will have to pay €10 as a contribution towards legal services.
If you have been the victim of an alleged sexual offence, we can provide legal advice, and in certain circumstances legal representation if your prior sexual history will be brought up by the accused during the trial. You will not be charged for this service.
If you do not want to avail of free legal services from the Legal Aid Board, you can hire a private solicitor. However you will have to pay their fees and other costs.
How do I apply for free legal advice?
The Garda Síochána will normally get in touch directly with us and we will contact you using the details they give us.
Alternatively you can complete the application form and return it to us. Completed forms should be returned to:
Human Trafficking Applications
Smithfield Law Centre
48 / 49 North Brunswick Street,
Freephone: 1800 238343.
Telephone: (01) 6469600.
Fax: (01) 6710200.
Who will provide the free legal advice?
Usually a specially-trained solicitor in our Smithfield Law Centre will provide the legal advice. If you live in the Galway/Mayo area, we may be able to provide you with services from our Galway Seville House Law Centre instead.
Unfortunately we do not provide this service from any other location at present.