LAS VEGAS — Nevada’s five legal aid organizations, which provide legal aid to Nevadans who can’t afford a lawyer, along with the Access to Justice Commission, a group created by the Nevada Supreme Court to advocate for equal civil justice, announced a nationwide campaign to Recruiting Silver State attorneys to assist Nevadans with critical legal matters.
Nevada attorneys who work on a volunteer basis can help people solve a variety of legal problems. The attorneys can help save a family’s home from foreclosure due to a layoff or medical disaster, protect a child from abuse or neglect, or defend against consumer fraud or the financial abuse of a senior.
Attorneys can provide free legal services through a number of not-for-profit agencies: Legal Aid of Southern Nevada, Nevada Legal Services, Northern Nevada Legal Aid, Southern Nevada Senior Law Program, and Volunteer Attorneys for Rural Nevadans.
Areas of critical need include advocacy for children and family law, advocacy for victims of domestic violence, elder support and consumer exploitation.
Access to Justice reports many benefits for attorneys who volunteer.
“Providing pro bono through legal aid offers attorneys a quality experience,” said Brad Lewis, director of the Access to Justice Commission. “Whether it’s volunteering for an Ask-a-Lawyer seminar or taking on a case, Nevada attorneys can build skills to make them better attorneys while earning CLE ( Continuing Legal Education). But the biggest benefit that we hear most from lawyers is that it feels great to help someone. Unrecognized by most, legal aid keeps people busy, helps kids stay in school, something everyone wants.”
Attorneys working with Nevada legal aid providers are changing the lives of Nevada residents for the better. Other legal assistance includes securing benefits for eligible veterans and mating children with guardians or adoptive families.
But the community’s need for legal representation far outweighs the number of hours volunteered.
“76% of legal requirements are not met,” added Lewis. “In 2021, legal aid helped 40,648 families in difficulty, although there were over 100,000 legal issues that did not receive professional legal representation due to a lack of dedicated volunteers to help in these cases.”
To learn more about volunteering or giving, please visit www.nvbar.org/probono.
To learn more about the Commission visit https://nvbar.org/access-to-justice/atj/
ABOUT ACCESS TO THE COURT
The Nevada Supreme Court created a Standing Commission on Access to Justice in June 2006 to promote equal civil justice for all, regardless of wealth, status, power, or ability to pay.
The Nevada Access to Justice Commission consists of 27 members, with Justice James Hardesty and Justice Kristina Pickering serving as co-chairs. The commission has embarked on an aggressive, comprehensive agenda aimed at improving the ability of all Nevadans, particularly those of modest means, to utilize the Nevada legal system by increasing the delivery and funding of legal utilities, pro bono services and self-help services improved.
ABOUT THE LEGAL AID CENTER OF SOUTHERN NEVADA The Legal Aid Center is a not-for-profit law firm dedicated to providing direct legal representation, legal assistance and advice, and community legal education to those who cannot afford an attorney. The Legal Aid Center offers a variety of programs to help victims of domestic violence and crime, victims of consumer fraud and children in foster care. The Clark County Civil Law Self-Help Center and Clark County Family Law Self-Help Center and websites are operated by the Legal Aid Center.
ABOUT NEVADA LEGAL SERVICES Nevada Legal Services operates nationwide and can help with a variety of legal issues. NLS primarily assists with housing cases where tenants are facing eviction or termination of their subsidized housing, where individuals and families apply for and are denied or terminated for SNAP, TANF or other government benefits, are denied unemployment and pandemic unemployment benefits, and have criminal records sealed and eviction registers, which boost people’s ability to find work and become self-reliant.
ABOUT NORTHERN NEVADA LEGAL AID Northern Nevada Legal AID is a nonprofit legal aid organization serving income-earning residents in Washoe and the surrounding rural counties of northern Nevada. Legal aid is free or low-cost advice, assistance or representation in civil matters for those who could not otherwise afford a lawyer. Its goal is to remove barriers in accessing the justice system for the most vulnerable members of our society in order to protect their rights, protect them and ensure stability.
ABOUT THE SOUTHERN NEVADA SENIOR LAW PROGRAM The vision of the Southern Nevada Senior Law Program is to empower seniors through free, quality legal services. The mission of the non-profit organization is to ensure access to justice for seniors with the greatest economic and social needs.
ABOUT VOLUNTEER ATTORNEYS FOR RURAL NEVADANS Volunteer Attorney’s for Rural Nevadan’s (VARN) is a non-profit 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization.
VARN believes that all people should have access to the civil justice system. VARN’s mission is to provide free and/or reduced-fee civil legal representation to those with limited resources and survivors of domestic violence, and to encourage and facilitate the provision of voluntary services by attorneys and others.