Legal Aid

OPU’s legal team assists refugees and migrants with legal problems. In particular, you can contact us on migration and asylum law issues at all OPU offices.  Our advice is free and confidential.

Need legal advice?

What is the process of working with the client in providing services?

Appointments: Please make an appointment for legal advice in advance depending on which OPU office is closest to your home, contact details here. It is best and quickest to make an appointment by phone. You can also make an appointment in person. In emergency situations, we can arrange counselling without an appointment.

Understanding: It is important that you understand everything when you have a legal consultation. Our lawyers can provide advice in Czech, Slovak, Ukrainian, Russian, English, German, French and Spanish, and can even arrange free interpretation into other languages. If you require interpretation for a legal consultation with us, please let us know when you book your appointment.

Topics: You can contact us in particular for questions of migration and asylum law, which we have traditionally specialized in for a long time, for example regarding your asylum procedure or your residence permit. We can also advise on related issues such as employment law (non-payment of wages, wrongful dismissal), family law issues (marriage, registered partnership, divorce, regulation of child rights), basic criminal law issues (criminal expulsion) and others. If we do not have a solution for your legal situation, we will recommend the service of another organisation.

A legal assessment of whether we can take your case: Our lawyers will provide a basic legal consultation and legal assessment of your case upon appointment. Unfortunately, we do not have unlimited capacity, so any legal drafting and representation in proceedings is not an entitlement service and is at the discretion of the OPU Legal Department as to whether and to what extent it can take on the case for representation. The specific projects that OPU is involved in can be found here in the Projects section, while depending on OPU’s legal assessment, it is also possible in certain cases to take over a case regardless of OPU’s current projects.

Personal advice: We provide legal advice in person. Due to the sensitivity and complexity of the topics we deal with, it is not possible to provide advice by phone or email. We can answer general brief queries by email but it usually takes us up to 15 days to get back to you due to our workload. Our emails are not used to send legal submissions for the drafting of an appeal – you will need to make an appointment to do this in person. The exception to contacting us primarily by phone and email or by post is if you are deprived of your liberty, particularly in an immigration detention centre or prison. We do not provide advice to third parties (“intermediaries”).

Non-discrimination and non-violence: Our employees respect the uniqueness of every person regardless of their origin, ethnicity, race, color, native language, age, gender, marital status, medical condition, sexual orientation, economic situation, or religious or political beliefs. Our employees prevent and do not engage in any inappropriate behaviorviolence, including sexual exploitation and violence.

Where can you complain about OPU services? If you are dissatisfied with the service you receive, or if you have experienced any inappropriate behaviour by a member of staff or any form of violence, including sexual violence, at OPU, you can complain, even anonymously, in person or in writing. You can file a complaint through an electronic form, send it to the selected contact persons, or to any employee of OPU, and you can also file it anonymously. Reported cases of inappropriate behaviour by OPU staff are investigated by an independent external investigator. A complaint against an OPU employee shall be made to the Director of the organization or his/her designee. Complaints against the OPU Director should be made to the Chair of the OPU Board of Directors, relevant contacts can be found in the Contacts or Feedback section.

You can lodge a complaint against an organisation with the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, https://www.unhcr.org/.