People with intellectual and other developmental disabilities can come into contact with the law in all sorts of ways, due to their disability.

Legal scales

Some laws are designed to support people who have a disability so that they can have a fair chance to live their lives in their own way, like the law to stop discrimination. At other times, laws can make things harder for a person with a disability because of the way that the laws are used.

Through our advocacy service, DDWA support people with developmental and their families when there are difficulties in any area where laws have an impact on their life.

Human Rights

  • Discrimination and harassment (employment, education, housing provision of goods and services)
  • Employment (bullying, unfair dismissals, Occupational Safety & Health)
  • Safety (protection from violence and abuse)
  • Voting in government elections

Financial Protections

  • Wills/Special Disability Trusts
  • Contracts (entering into contracts, unfair contracts, unsolicited sales, consumer protection laws)
  • Scamming
  • Centrelink (Disability Support Pension eligibility)
  • Superannuation
  • Workers Compensation

Decision Making

  • Guardianship
  • Administration Orders
  • Child Protection
  • Enduring Power of Attorney
  • Enduring Power of Guardianship
  • Advanced Health Directives

Police and the Criminal Justice System

  • Going to court
  • Finding a lawyer
  • Support for Victims
  • Support for Offenders (Intellectual Disability Diversion Court, START court, Youth detention)


What is your child's challenging behaviour trying to tell you?

Sexuality, Relationships and Your Rights

  • What is your child’s challenging behaviour trying to tell you?
    • See page 27 – Your child and the law
  • Sexuality, Relationships and Your Rights
    • See pages 75 – 88 Internet safety – Sexting, pornography, online stalking and harassment
    • See pages 89 – 92 If you are a victim of crime or if you have been charged with a crime

Other Resources

If an adult is not able to make sensible decisions about their finances or lifestyle, or is doing things that are not in their best interests, it may be possible for the State Administrative Tribunal (the SAT) to appoint a guardian or administrator (or both) to make decisions for them.

  • A guardian makes decisions about a person's lifestyle and legal affairs, such as where they should live and who they should live with, what work or education they should be involved in, who they spend time or communicate with, and what medical treatment they should receive.
  • An administrator makes decisions about a person's finances and property.

Click the button below to find some Quick Answers Videos and downloadable fact sheets about Guardianship and Administration by Legal Aid Western Australia:

Woman on the phone