Clinics & Projects
Fair Debt Collection Lawyer for the Day
This project provides volunteer lawyers to low-income, unrepresented debtors to help with civil debt collection lawsuits.
Attorneys provide Limited Assistance Representation (LAR) to clients, meaning they are only involved in the case for that day. Not trained in LAR? Watch a training and read required materials.
How it Works
Clients come to the project in a number of ways – most are referred by the judges or court clerks, and some just walk up to our table. Once a client asks for legal help:
- A paralegal or law student screens interested clients for eligibility
- A VLP attorney matches clients with a volunteer attorney.
- Volunteer attorneys may provide:
- Advice and information,
- draft pleadings,
- negotiate a settlement,
- or argue a motion in front of a judge.
We have forms, files, reference materials and other necessary items for volunteer attorneys.
Benefits of Volunteering
- Limited Assistance Representation means you start and finish with your client on the same day; no greater commitment with court proceedings or legal services needed.
- Mentorship: Our newer attorneys learn from more experienced attorneys, and more seasoned lawyers get the chance to mentor and guide.
- Networking: Meet fellow attorneys in your area of practice and get connected with other legal professionals.
- Courtroom Experience: Gain valuable courtroom experience in a supportive environment. Volunteers can attend hearings, talk with opposing counsel, and present to the Clerk Magistrate.
The Volunteer Lawyers Project provides primary malpractice insurance for all pro bono work.
If you don’t have experience in fair debt collection cases, we strongly suggest that you attend one of VLP’s trainings before volunteering. Please check our Calendar of Events for upcoming training dates.