Jabatan Bantuan Guaman (JBG)
Also known as the Legal Aid Department
in English term. Jabatan Bantuan Guaman comes under the purview of the Prime Minister's Department.
Established on September 15, 1970 as the Legal Aid Bureau (Malay: Biro Bantuan Guaman BBG
) with the main objective of providing legal aid to those who cannot afford to engage a lawyer, at a minimal fee.
Legal Aid Bureau provides legal advice, legal representation and mediation services to those eligible. However, during that time, legal advice and assistance given were confined to:
- Government servants in cases of legal proceedings relating to their official duty (vide the Public Officers (Conduct and Discipline) (General Orders Chapter D) Regulations 1969)
- Poor persons in 'forma pauperis' (vide the Rules of Supreme Court 1957)
- Persons charged with criminal offences involving capital punishment (vide the Criminal Procedure Code).
In October 1969 the issue was referred to the Attorney-General which supported the proposals. Subsequently it was referred to the Ministry of Justice which later sought the advice of the Bar Council who also supported the scheme.
A pilot project was launched in September 1970 providing legal aid relating to advice only. A sum of RM100,000 was allocated for the purpose. Due to the limited fund it was therefore found necessary to confine its jurisdiction to certain specific proceedings. Priority was given to family matters.
At the beginning, the Bureau was placed under the Attorney-General's Chambers
and following the setting up of the Ministry of Law in 1985 it was placed under the Ministry until May 1995. It now comes under the wings of the Legal Affairs Division of the Prime Minister's Department
With effect from January 16, 2010, the Legal Aid Bureau was renamed the Legal Aid Department (Malay: Jabatan Bantuan Guaman
Legal Aid Department
Prime Minister's Department
Level 1, Legal Affairs Building
Pusat Pentadbiran Kerajaan Persekutuan
||Available in both English and Malay versions.
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|Guide ID: 2188 - Last Updated: January 25, 2014