BAMSL/Fox 2 Call-A-Lawyer
On the third Tuesday of each month from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., volunteer attorneys staff the telephones at KTVI-TV Fox 2 to answer a wide variety of legal questions from television viewers. This program brings a positive image to BAMSL and the legal profession, as it provides advice to callers or puts them in touch with the resources and programs already in place to assist them with their legal problems.
Attorneys in the Eastern District of Missouri have a unique opportunity to fulfill their professional obligation to perform pro bono service by providing legal assistance to unrepresented civil litigants in the United States District Court on a volunteer basis. While all members of the bar of the Eastern District of Missouri, as a condition for admission to practice, are obligated under Local Rule 12.01(I) to represent clients in pending cases when appointed by the Court, the volunteer program allows lawyers with a particular interest in pro bono service to join a roster of volunteer attorneys from which judges will make most civil case appointments. Lawyers who join the panel are encouraged to specify case types and areas of practice in which they have a particular interest to serve as appointed counsel.
In June 2019, the U.S. District Court will partner with the Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis (BAMSL) to assist self-represented litigants with initial filing form completion and initial case review. BAMSL will recruit and manage a group of volunteer attorneys to help lead this effort.
To volunteer, click here.
Free Legal Answers volunteers are able to log on to provide pro bono service at any time of the day, from anywhere they can access the Internet and as frequently as they wish. Volunteer lawyers choose which questions to answer and can answer anonymously, unless the lawyer chooses otherwise. Professional liability insurance for website answers is maintained by the ABA. Track pro bono service hours through the website. To volunteer, visit the appropriate state website and click the "Volunteer Attorney Registration" link at the top of the page.
Gateway is a nonprofit legal aid law firm dedicated to helping the poor and disabled, focusing primarily on consumer and social security issues.
- Opportunities: client intake interviews and obtaining case files and medical records
- Requirements/Qualifications: approximately 3-4 hours per week; reliability
These workshops, coordinated by Catholic Legal Assistance Ministry, M.I.C.A. Project, and Missouri Immigrant and Refugee Advocates, are targeted to members of the immigrant community, and are spaces where people will be able to work with a volunteer attorney to complete a Power of Attorney form to designate someone to take care of their property or care for their children if, for some reason, they are unable to do so. Volunteer attorneys are needed to assist in advice and preparation of powers of attorney. An orientation will be provided and Spanish interpreters will be available. No prior experience or area of practice is required. Learn more and sign up here.
The Kaufman Fund has seen firsthand where many veterans have a broad range of legal issues, both criminal and civil. These veterans oftentimes have a limited ability to pay for even minimal legal services.
In an effort to help these Veterans in need, The Kaufman Fund has partnered with St. Francis Community Services Veterans Advocacy Project and Legal Services of Eastern Missouri. It is the mission of this program to provide eligible Veterans in St. Louis City, St. Louis County, and St. Charles County with legal services, either Pro Bono or at a significantly reduced fee. The type of legal services to be provided will depend upon the nature of the matter and the court that has jurisdiction over such cases.
Lawyers from all practice areas are encouraged to volunteer. Areas of practice with higher demand include: Family Law, Landlord/Tenant, Criminal/Municipal, Bankruptcy, Estate Planning, Consumer Credit, and general civil litigation. Generally, legal matters in Federal court will not be included, except Bankruptcies.
Veterans in need of legal services may call 314-977-5458. For other assistance, visit The Kaufman Fund's website or call 314-753-8355.
Provides legal and supportive services to improve the lives of its clients to assist them in obtaining social and economic justice.
- Opportunities: serve as a legal intern in the senior citizens, home ownership, or domestic violence projects; interns typically interview clients, investigate cases, draft pleadings, and in some cases represent clients in administrative or court hearings
- Qualifications/Requirements: prefer 2Ls and 3Ls, prefer students who can make a two semester commitment; interview, training provided by directing attorney; can take 2-4 weeks before an internship can start; requires 10 hours per week (Monday through Friday)
Dedicated to helping victims of abuse in times of crisis. LAAW works with legal system, law enforcement and the criminal and civil courts systems.
- Opportunities: volunteer lawyers needed for casework and fund-raising opportunities; law students not yet Rule 13 approved may work on the volunteer help line, if Rule 13 approved they may assist volunteer lawyers with casework.
- Qualifications/Requirements: volunteer lawyers contact Katie Wessling, the agency attorney, at 314-452-6492 if interested in volunteering and are required to attend a two-hour CLE-approved session.
LSEM is a non-profit organization providing legal assistance to low-income people in civil matters. Areas of client assistance include representation of domestic violence victims, tenants’ rights and other housing matters, public benefits, immigration and human trafficking, children’s access to education, guardianships, and assistance to the elderly. LSEM also has a Community Economic Development Program that provides legal advice to low-income entrepreneurs and non-profits that serve low income communities.
- Opportunities: attorneys are needed as volunteers to assist clients in the foregoing areas
- Qualifications/Requirements: a current Missouri law license in good standing and a desire to help
The Missouri Attorney General’s Military Legal Assistance Team (MLAT) is a statewide program bringing together private attorneys to provide pro bono legal representation and education to our military communities.
The MLAT provides pro bono legal assistance to servicemembers and veterans in Missouri for qualifying legal matters. The program also offers educational opportunities for Missouri servicemembers, veterans, and businesses. The MLAT is Missouri's first statewide attorney general-led program offering our military communities access to pro bono civil legal services.
The Missouri Coalition for the Right to Counsel, an award winning initiative, enlists volunteers to undertake felony jury case assignments from the Missouri State Public Defender ("MSPD"), pending in the Circuit Courts of Jackson County, the City of St. Louis, and St. Louis County.
Our volunteer attorneys have a realistic opportunity to gain priceless "first chair" jury trial experience, while also easing the caseloads of overworked and underpaid public defenders.
Almost 300 Missouri lawyers have taken the training presented by veteran MSPD trial lawyers. 170 cases have been assigned, since the program began. The timing of when to take a case is left to the volunteer.
The Coalition has been honored with two awards — the "What's Right with the Region Award" presented by Focus St. Louis, and the "Pro Bono Award" presented by the Young Lawyer's Section of the Missouri Bar.
First step to be eligible for a case assignment:
Complete the no cost, CLE qualified training on October 4-5, 2018, at the Kansas City offices of Shook, Hardy & Bacon. Space is limited, so Register Now!
For questions, please contact Richard Scherrer at Richard.firstname.lastname@example.org or (314) 340-7625, ext. 237.
Seize this opportunity to help our Public Defenders and, at the same time, try a jury case, taking control of your path to becoming a Trial Lawyer; not just a Trial Preparer.
Advocates for Educational Reform (AFER) Program
Volunteer lawyers needed to represent underprivileged children in:
- St. Louis County Family Court; and
- St. Louis County Public Schools at suspension hearings.
VLAA offers legal and accounting assistance to artists and arts organizations with arts-related legal and accounting problems.
- Opportunities: volunteer lawyers work one-on-one with clients regarding arts-related legal issues, recruit volunteer lawyers, accept speaking engagements for VLAA , write or edit VLAA publications or participate in the Arts Resolutions Services program as a mediator; law students may work on research projects, working independently or in small groups or assist with administrative tasks.
- Qualifications and Requirements: volunteer lawyers may work on one case per year which generally requires less than five hours of time spread over several weeks; law students must submit a letter of interest and current resume to email@example.com.