Family Law Services

The Pro Bono Project has been providing family law services since its inception. We provide services to Santa Clara County community members who have cases in Santa Clara County in domestic violence with or without custody/visitation issues, Reentry Civil Legal Services and parentage actions. Services can include advice, referral to other resources, preparation of documents, help with filing, coaching on self-representation, negotiation and settlement, limited scope representation, and full legal representation.

The Pro Bono Project can provide services through the following means:

  • Dometic Violence
  • Reentry Civil Legal Services
  • Parentage

Pro Bono Project, through its Domestic Violence Project, provides free legal advice and/or limited scope representation in domestic violence restraining order hearings to victims/survivors. The hearings will make a determination on domestic violence and grant restraining orders if appropriate. The court can adjudicate temporary custody, visitation and support. Services are for low-income individuals with cases in Santa Clara County.

The Pro Bono Project, in partnership with the Office of Reentry Services provides free civil legal services to Santa Clara County incarcerated and formerly incarcerated individuals. We provide legal informative sessions in and out of custody. Pro Bono Project handles only Santa Clara County cases. Individuals must be referred by the Reentry Resource Center, County of Santa Clara and have a PFN# and/or CDC#. We do not assist in criminal cases.

The Pro Bono Project has a special Parentage Project. If the Department of Child Support Services has filed a parentage and child support action against an alleged parent who is indigent, the Project may provide services, including representation in court. Representation is for the person against whom the case has been brought (that is, the “respondent” or “defendant” in the case, not the “other parent”). Representation can be provided in cases where the issue of determination of parentage is involved. For example, the Project can assist indigent and/or incarcerated alleged fathers on the issue of parentage, in seeking to obtain genetic testing or to be established as a parent in a child support case, or, in certain, limited instances where possible, to pursue challenging a parentage determination (in a child support case) after it has been made. Often clients are referred to the Pro Bono Project by the court.

The Parentage Project does not provide assistance to custodial parents or others with whom the child(ren) live(s). Custodial parents or others seeking services in connection with establishment, collection, or enforcement of child support, may benefit from contacting the Department of Child Support Services to request such services.