Pro Bono attorneys, you can now view and select your own cases. You can also view your open and closed cases and access time records. Please visit the following website: lasocba.legalserver.org

Consumer

Low-income families have many consumer related problems for which they need legal assistance to maintain their fragile financial situation. Attorneys are needed to assist in Chapter 7 and 13 Bankruptcies, debt collection, student loans, garnishment of wages, and frozen bank accounts. About 100 consumer cases were referred last year to pro bono attorneys in these areas.

Family

Families most requested need for services is in family law cases. We concentrate our efforts on protecting domestic violence survivors. We provide legal services primarily in Injunctions for Protection Orders, initiating and defending Dissolution of Marriage with custody. We handle a limited number of other paternity/custody disputes, modification of custody, step-parent adoptions, and “child snatches.” There are an increasing number of relatives who are seeking guardian advocacy for adults and Chapter 751/Temporary Custody for minor children, both of which we handle. Last year we helped over 200 families in this area with pro bono attorneys.

Housing

Low-income families have a number of legal problems related to their housing. We need pro bono attorneys to help in eviction defense of private landlord/tenant rentals. We also have tenants who need help in disputes over conditions of their rental unit, return of security deposits, and non-renewal of their lease. We also handle mortgage foreclosures, fraudulent transfers, and tax liens and sales. All of which relate to the homestead of the client. Pro bono attorneys helped over 100 families in this area last year.

Guardian ad Litem

We have a unique program that serves children in Orange County. Pro bono attorneys and lay volunteers serve as advocates for children in the juvenile, criminal and domestic relations division of the circuit court. The majority of cases involve abused, abandoned, and neglected children who are the subject of juvenile dependency cases. GALs are appointed in juvenile delinquency and criminal division cases to represent the child victim or witness. Occasionally a GAL is appointed to a minor defendant in a delinquency case to provide best interest representation, not to serve as the child’s attorney in the delinquency matter. The role of the GAL and the GAL Volunteer Assistant is to serve as the “eyes and ears” of the Court and to advocate for the best interests of the child. Currently about 1200 children in Orange County are represented through the Guardian ad Litem Program. Approximately 400 attorneys and lay volunteers participate. Training, manuals and staff support services are available. For more information about the Guardian ad Litem Program, please contact Marie Priebe, at [email protected].

Miscellaneous

Additional areas of law such as immigration, non-profit incorporation, appellate, expunction of records are also referred.

Support Services

We have manuals and forms for many of these cases available to pro bono attorneys, and we offer trainings and staff attorney assistance. We can reimburse certain litigation costs if they are approved by our office prior to incurring the fee. Our office provides malpractice insurance primary coverage for all pro bono cases.