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Legal organizations all over the county are organizing events that highlight ongoing pro bono programs or developing new ones.

Legal community to celebrate pro bono next week

Next week is “Celebrate Pro Bono” week! 

Beginning Oct. 24, hundreds of law firms, bar associations and other legal groups across the country will recognize work done on behalf of the poor and underserved. The second annual pro bono celebration is sponsored by the American Bar Association Standing Committee on Pro Bono. The celebration continues through Oct. 30.

State and local bar associations, law firms, law schools and other legal organizations are organizing events that highlight ongoing programs or develop news ones. More than half of the events are either direct service clinics for low-income individuals or training for lawyers in specific pro bono work, including service to immigrant communities, domestic violence victims and general legal advice. As of today, organizers have planned more than 485 events in 48 states.

Additional information about Celebrate Pro Bono Week, as well as a list of planned events and an interactive map is available here.

One comment

  1. Wondering if there is anything set up in Minnesota like this?

    (from the Brennen Center for Justice, Legal Services E-lert)
    Practicing and Retired “Baby Boomer” Lawyers Serve as New Pool of Pro Bono Help for Low Income New Yorkers Under Chief Judge’s Attorney Emeritus Program
    Noeleen G. Walder, “N.Y. Chief Judge Expands Ranks of ‘Emeritus’” New York Law Journal, October 28, 2010
    The New York Law Journal writes: “New York Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman announced Monday the expansion of a program that pairs ‘emeritus’ attorneys with pro bono opportunities to include practicing as well as retired attorneys. The initiative was designed to tap into the large number of retiring baby boomers to boost the ranks of lawyers available to represent poor New Yorkers in foreclosure, housing, family and other civil cases. ‘This recent amendment helps us to better leverage the demographic shift that is bringing unprecedented numbers of experienced lawyers to the verge of retirement and to channel those enormous resources to assist the growing number of vulnerable New Yorkers unable to find legal assistance,’ Lippman said in a statement. Initially, the attorney emeritus program was open to retired lawyers in good standing who were at least 55 and had practiced law for at least 10 years. In return for promising to provide at least 30 hours of free assistance a year to low- and moderate-income clients, the lawyers received free training and are exempt from the state’s annual $375 registration fee and mandatory CLE requirements. Last month, the initiative was one of 10 programs in the state to be recognized by Harvard Kennedy School’s ‘Bright Ideas’ program, which was created to share ‘creative government initiatives’ around the country with public sector, nonprofit and academic communities. Now, eligibility has been expanded to include nonretired lawyers who otherwise meet the program’s age and experience requirements. . . . According to Anthony Galvao, who serves as counsel to Lippman, roughly 45,650 attorneys in the state who are age 55 or older are registered as active, compared with 17,000 retired lawyers in the same age group. Approximately 22,000 lawyers are expected to turn 55 within the next five years. The court system is in the process of modifying the biennial attorney registration form so that active attorneys can indicate if they want to participate in the emeritus program. Meanwhile, interested lawyers can call 877-800-0396 or complete an online application at http://www.nycourts.gov.”

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