If you do not have very high resources (the scales are fixed each year, the ceiling for legal aid is 874 euros and that for legal aid partial of 1.311 euros for 2007, but it is also taken into account family expenses) and that your legal protection insurance does not bear the costs related to your dispute, you have the possibility to file a file with the Office of Legal Aid (or BAJ).
You must then go to the High Court of your home to pick up a file that you must carefully fill out and to which you must attach a number of documents.
These are mainly:
- a piece of identification (identity card, passport, residence permit)
- the family record book
- proof of address
- the income tax return and tax notice from the previous year
- recent evidence of resources
- possibly, previous court decisions, summonses, summonses
If you have not chosen a lawyer yourself, the BAJ will appoint one to you. Otherwise, you will need to attach to your file the letter of acceptance from the lawyer you wish to be designated.
If necessary, you can also ask the BAJ to designate you:
- an attorney (if it is a case pending or to come before the Court of Appeal and the presence of an attorney is mandatory),
- a bailiff (in order to carry out all the meanings, forced executions etc.),
- an interpreter (who can be very useful if you do not express yourself well in French)
The file must be filed with the Court of Grande Istance of your home (if no procedure is still engaged) or the place where the case is treated (if the file is already in progress).
If you get a positive answer, the State will take charge of either all or part (more or less important, ranging from 15 to 85%) of the costs of the procedure. Otherwise, you have one month to challenge the refusal of the BAJ.
Know that you have one year from the date of the decision of the BAJ to initiate the procedure, said decision no longer valid beyond this time.