Neighbourhood house lays down the law

May 14, 2022 BY

Legal information: Ballarat North’s Law Week sessions will be presented by Ballarat and Grampians Community Legal Service’s in-house lawyer Monisha Sudarsanan. Photo: SUPPLIED

VICTORIAN Law Week starts next week, with many of Ballarat’s neighbourhood houses getting involved.

On Tuesday, May 17, Ballarat North Neighbourhood House will host three informative sessions part of the annual initiative.

Victorian Law Week is about informing people of their rights within the state’s legal system, and BNNH coordinator Kristen Sheridan said their offering aims to give people an understanding about decision-making powers.

“I think it’s important that we recognise the legal system is a big and complicated system,” she said.

“It can leave people nervous or worried about trying one of these processes or making a will or whatever they need to do, so this is about making that sort of thing accessible for everybody to understand.”

BNNH will be partnering with Ballarat and Grampians Community Legal Service for the first time to deliver this year’s Victorian Law Week with lawyer Monisha Sudarsanan leading the sessions.

On the list are wills and probates from 10am to 10.45am, then powers of attorney at 11.15am to 12pm and lastly advance care directives at 1pm to 1.45pm.

Jacqui Lawrence, project and educations officer at BGCLS, said the theme of the day is about ensuring people are legally prepared for their final stages in life.

“Wills and probates, of course, is about setting up those documents whereas our later talks will be about the different powers people can make for themselves and the practical side of that,” she said.

“Then we’ll go into a bit more depth in terms of medical decisions at the end-of-life phase and how people can make those decisions about resuscitation and things like that.

“It’s important that they’re aware of their rights and their responsibilities but also of their access points.

“The earlier you can identify and get assistance with a legal issue, the better it is because often it won’t have escalated to a point where everyone’s working overtime to try to fix everything.”

To register for any or all of the sessions visit bit.ly/3vRhu7R.