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Research Report: Access to justice background paper
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Access to justice background paper  ( 2003 )  Cite this report

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Existing research

The purpose of this section is to provide a brief overview of a number of generalist and specialist studies undertaken into access to justice and legal needs, both in Australia and overseas. It is not intended to be an exhaustive review of all literature available. The overview provides a brief description of the objectives of the studies, as well as a summary of the methodology employed in carrying out the studies.

The generalist studies focus on assessments of needs in the general population. There is also an abundance of qualitative research on the access to justice needs of particular socially and economically disadvantaged people. While some of this research is contained in dedicated 'access to justice' studies, the majority appears as parts of larger studies on specific groups of disadvantaged people or specific forms of disadvantage. The Australian Law Reform Commission has produced a number of reports which to varying degrees canvass access to justice issues. Notable amongst these are the reports on women, children and multiculturalism.


Schetzer, L, Mullins, J & Buonamano, R 2003, Access to justice & legal needs, a project to identify legal needs, pathways and barriers for disadvantaged people in NSW. Background paper. Law and Justice Foundation of NSW, Sydney, 2002, <>