Donate General Legal Services
The greatest need for donated legal assistance is family law (divorce; adoption; guardianship; guardian ad litem; domestic violence; pro se divorce clinics; divorce mediations). Even if you do not practice family law, consider making this your pro bono niche. You can ask for a mentor to help you through the first few cases. There are other areas and volunteer lawyers are sometimes needed in other areas as well. Other areas of law include:
- Consumer law (bankruptcy/ debtor relief; collections/ repossessions; garnishments; public utilities; unfair car sales; repairs; contracts; unfair sales practices)
- Housing law (repairs; landlord/tenant disputes; evictions; foreclosures; home ownership; easements; mobile home issues)
- Benefits (SSI/SSD; Medicaid)
- Employment law (pension problems; unemployment compensation; leave issues)
- Estates & Probate (wills, probate proceedings, powers of attorney, living wills)
- Miscellaneous (clinics, covering motion hour, CLE trainings)
If you still are unsure how you can help, contact your local pro bono program coordinator with one of Kentucky’s civil aid programs. Some of these programs also offer clinics for their area such as pro se divorce clinics, wills clinics, tax relief clinics, or expungement clinics, for example. Some programs in rural areas simply need lawyers to cover motion hour practices on routine motions such as setting a pre-trial conference date or scheduling matters. If you're willing to cover routine motions for pro bono program or legal aid in your county, let your pro bono coordinator know you can help in this easy way.
Civil Legal Assistance to Veterans The Legal Aid Society (LAS) in Louisville is undertaking a statewide initiative to provide more veterans with legal representation in civil legal aid matters and with securing veterans' benefits. LAS is taking a two-prong approach: (1) reaching out to veterans who may be needing legal representation and (2) recruiting volunteer attorneys to provide legal representation on veterans' benefits cases. To learn more contact Lea Hardwick, firstname.lastname@example.org , or call 502.614.3112.
Child Advocacy Today ("CAT"), the state's first medical-legal partnership for Kentucky's children, is a joint collaboration between the University of Kentucky Children's Hospital, Access to Justice Foundation and the Kentucky Volunteer Lawyer Program. CAT will address unmet legal needs and provide legal assistance and counsel to low-income families for basic needs (e.g. housing, healthcare, food, safety) through the pediatric clinical setting. Just as the medical profession advocates preventive healthcare, CAT provides the opportunity to provide preventive legal assistance. We are currently seeking financial support but will also accept names of lawyers or law firms who would like to provide pro bono services when needed. For more information, contact Andrea Welker, Attorney, J251 Kentucky Clinic, 740 South Limestone, Lexington, KY 40536-0284; phone 859.323.0254; www.childadvocacytoday.org.
Doctors & Lawyers for Kids in Louisville, KY, also provides direct legal services to the poor and indigent in a manner designed to identify and address legal issues in a location where indigent families come routinely for immunization, check-ups and treatment. The program is a partnership between the Louisville Bar Association, Legal Aid Society of Louisville, and the University of Louisville Department of Pediatrics; funding partners include the Louisville Bar Foundation, Children’s Hospital Foundation and The Gheens Foundation. A Legal Aid Society attorney and paralegal staff the office located in the Child and Youth Clinic of the U of L School of Medicine Department of Pediatrics, the busiest clinic for indigent children in the city. Issues addressed at the clinic include: Housing, family law, consumer matters, public benefits, health care, employment, immigration, and legal document needs. Volunteer attorneys are needed to take cases from the clinic that Legal Aid is unable to accept. For more information, please contact Scott Furkin, Executive Director of the LBA email@example.com or Kate Lindsay, Pro Bono Manager, firstname.lastname@example.org or at 502-583-5314.
CLE and Training Opportunities
Persons in need of representation often have problems that are not characteristic of persons who are able to pay for representation. As such, lawyers do not frequently practice in areas of need for the poverty population and may not feel comfortable taking these types of cases. CLE is offered on poverty law issues and it is free if you are willing to take a case. Are you willing to take a case if you know more about a particular area of law? All legal services trainings are open to members of the KBA and we will also be having pro bono trainings for the private practitioner.
We want to help you help others!