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Central Valley Pro Bono


As an attorney, you can provide pro bono services to CCLS-eligible clients in various ways, including:

Representation: providing pro bono legal services to CCLS-eligible clients in the form direct representation or co-counseling with a CCLS Staff Attorney in different areas of law, including:

  • Corporate Law
  • Consumer/Bankruptcy
  • Children and the Law
  • Employment/Unemployment
  • Education Law
  • Elder Law
  • Family Law/Domestic Abuse
  • General Civil Law
  • Health Law
  • Housing Law
  • Individual Rights
  • Immigration (U-Visa, VAWA)
  • Labor Law
  • Non-Profit/Community Economic Development
  • Public Benefits/Administrative Law
  • Social Security/SSI
  • Tax/Tax Controversy Issues
  • Veteran Issues

Counsel and Advice: provide pro bono legal services to CCLS-eligible clients in the form of counsel and advice in various areas of the law, including those listed above.

Research and Technical Assistance: Attorneys and non-attorneys (college/law/paralegal students/community volunteers) can assist CCLS attorneys and advocates with legal research and technical assistance for cases or projects being handled on behalf of CCLS-eligible clients.

Consulting, Mentoring, and Training Opportunities: Attorneys can support the work of CCLS by consulting, mentoring, and training CCLS advocates, attorneys, and potential new volunteers in a particular area of the law.

Community Legal Clinics: CCLS conducts legal clinics at community sites throughout Fresno County. Volunteers play a critical role in conducting intake, assessing clients' needs, and offering brief counsel and advice at these clinics.

Advantages



There are many advantages for attorneys seeking to engage in Pro Bono Legal work:

Recognition:

In conjunction with the State Bar of California and the Pro Bono Services Section of the Fresno County Bar Association, CCLS will recognize firms or individual attorneys who provide service to CCLS clients through the Challenge. In this regard, attorneys, paralegals, and law students who are certified to have completed at least 50 pro bono service hours on an annual basis are eligible to receive the State Bar of California's Wiley W. Manuel Pro Bono Service Certificate.

Qualified Pro Bono:

To receive free legal services from CCLS, all clients must meet the income and eligibility guidelines as set forth in the regulations of the Legal Services Corporation (LSC) or U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development. Clients must also meet citizenship or alien guidelines as outlined in LSC regulations (see 45 C.F.R. § § 1626.5 et seq.).

Screening:

CCLS attorneys carefully screen potential pro bono cases for viable causes of action or defenses to ensure that your clients will be able to actively participate in their cases.

Malpractice Insurance:

CCLS provides you with primary malpractice insurance coverage for all work conducted on behalf of CCLS clients, so that CCLS'S coverage takes effect before your coverage and deductible.

Transcript Reimbursement:

Clients placed by CCLS with pro bono attorneys may qualify for reimbursement of deposition and trial transcript costs through the Transcript Reimbursement Fund (Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code sections 8030.2-8030.8).

Fee Waiver:

A majority of our pro bono clients qualify for a waiver of court costs and fees under California Rules of Court, Rule 985 and Cal. Gov. Code section 68511.3. If a clerk or bench officer denies a fee-waiver application, please contact us for assistance.

Discounts/Free Access to MCLE Seminars:

Pro bono attorneys who have represent CCLS clients on a pro bono basis are eligible to receive discounts or free access to MCLE seminars. Please contact the VLSP Supervising Attorney for further information on how to take part in these MCLE seminars.

Technical Assistance:

For the majority of cases handled by our pro bono volunteers, VLSP also provides access to mentor attorneys, poverty law experts, and other professional volunteers to support you throughout your representation.

For more information about the VLSP and pro bono cases that are available with CCLS, please contact VLSP Supervising Attorney, Paul C. Mullen, at pmullen@centralcallegal.org or call 559-570-1224.



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