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Pro Bono Opportunities Guide

New York Legal Assistance Group

A not-for-profit law firm founded in 1990, the New York Legal Assistance Group (NYLAG) provides free civil legal assistance to New York's most at-risk, low income populations, including seniors, immigrants, victims of domestic violence, children with special needs, people with HIV/AIDS and chronic health issues, Holocaust survivors and others in need of legal help. NYLAG focuses on direct legal services, advocacy through impact litigation, consultation for social workers and their clients, community legal education, and volunteer programs for attorneys, law graduates, students, translators and others. Last year: NYLAG's General Legal Services Unit offered legal help to 7,227 clients needing assistance with public benefits, preserving health care, and ensuring access to educational and home care services. NYLAG's Matrimonial/Family Law Unit assisted nearly 3,000 clients seeking assistance with divorce, child custody, spousal support, and domestic violence issues. NYLAG's Immigration Protection Unit provided legal assistance to more than 5,000 immigrants, including direct representation in citizenship and naturalization proceedings. NYLAG's Special Litigation Unit is active in 26 class action cases, helping tens of thousands of indigent individuals obtain or retain access to basic entitlements and services. NYLAG's Holocaust Compensation Assistance Project offered compassionate support and legal information to thousands of survivors and family members about various international compensation programs affecting this vulnerable population.

  • County(s) of Volunteer Opportunity: All NYC, Bronx, Kings (Brooklyn), NY (Manhattan), Queens, Richmond (Staten Island)
  • Area of law: Civil Rights, Consumer, Debt/Credit/Bankruptcy, Disability, Disaster and Crisis Assistance, Education, Elder Law, Employment, Family & Juvenile, Foreclosure, Health, Homeless, Housing, Immigration & Naturalization, Life Planning, Nonprofit Organizations, Public Benefits, Taxes, Veterans, Matrimonial
  • Populations Served: Asylum Seekers, Children, Communities of Color, Domestic Violence Victims, Elderly, General Public, HIV, Immigrants, Lesbian, gay, bisexual & transgender, Low Income, Military/Veterans, Native Americans, Persons with Disabilities, State Residents, Women, Working poor and unemployed
  • Opportunities For: Interpreters, Law school clinic, Law Students, Lawyers, Nonlitigation Projects, Paralegals, Senior Lawyers, Small and medium law firm attorneys
  • Need for non-English services: Cantonese Chinese, Chinese, French, Haitian Creole, Korean, Mandarin Chinese, Russian, Spanish
  • Hours for Pro Bono Opportunities: Flexible, Monday-Friday 9am-5pm
  • Malpractice insurance is provided for volunteers: Yes
  • Training Provided: Yes
  • Training Required: No
  • CLE credit for trainings: Yes
  • Training / Supervision Comments: Malpractice insurance coverage is available only for volunteers who volunteer on-site, at the offices of the New York Legal Assistance Group.
  • CLE credit for pro bono: Yes
  • Mentoring or supervision offered: Yes
  • Volunteer lawyers need to meet a caseload or hours requirement: Yes
  • Other Case Load Requirements: Minimum of 15 hours per week
  • Types of projects in need of Pro Bono help: Alternative dispute resolution (ADR), Client counseling (e.g., brief advice), Client intake and screening, Draft legal documents (e.g., briefs), Legal Research, Litigation: Appellate, Litigation: Class actions, Litigation: Impact, Litigation: Trial/Direct Representation, Prepare legal education materials, Transactional work, Translate legal documents
  • Volunteers may participate long-distance: Yes
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