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Published: 22 June 2020
Author: Penny Savidis

RCT Law refers abuse survivors to Knowmore and related support organisations when appropriate and with their best interests at heart

ABC news recently filed a story titled ‘Lawyers Target Redress Abuse Clients in New Cottage Industry’ that reports “a circling pack of law firms” seeking to profit from National Redress Scheme applications by charging abuse survivors for work for which they’re entitled to free legal representation from the Community Legal Centre, Knowmore.

At RCT Law, when abuse survivors approach us for advice, we consider and discuss all legal options available to them, including the National Redress Scheme, civil litigation and out of court settlements. Where we recommend the National Redress Scheme as their best option, we strongly encourage survivors to approach Knowmore Legal Service.

RCT Law wholeheartedly endorses the valuable work performed by Knowmore, both during the life of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, and in representing survivors to help them navigate the National Redress Scheme.

In all but the most exceptional circumstances, we do not assist survivors with National Redress Scheme applications. We have assisted a very small number of clients with National Redress Scheme claims at their insistence due to exceptional circumstances, despite having first advised them of the free Knowmore alternative, and are currently assisting a survivor regarding a finalised National Redress Scheme application on a pro bono basis on referral from Knowmore.

RCT Law is proud to be part of a panel of trauma-informed specialist law firms to whom Knowmore refers abuse survivors for legal advice regarding their civil options (to consider as an alternative to pursuing a National Redress Scheme application).

RCT Law is a pioneer in representing survivors of sexual and physical abuse. We have acted for abuse survivors for decades, back when legal obstacles made it almost impossible to take claims to court.

RCT Managing Partner, Ron Pearce, spearheaded the Abuse Law practice in 1989 when he was made aware of the legal needs of survivors when liaising with church leadership in Richmond Hill. We were dedicated and willing to act when others thought it was all too hard. Thirty one years later and we are still fierce advocates for the rights of those abused as children now that there are fewer legal barriers to take action than before.

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