Last year was a big year for Pro Bono Project and the Virtual Legal Services Program. We added staff, added locations and increased the number of volunteer attorneys available for consultations.
What We Accomplished
With his background in public service and pro bono work, Cameron Day was hired in June to oversee and run the Virtual Legal Services Program. Then we focused on finding additional locations to host the clinics. Starting with a pilot program in Morgan Hill in February, we added 7 other locations: Campbell, Milpitas, Gilroy, Los Altos, Saratoga, and the Santa Clara County Bar Association and the Pro Bono Project offices.
During the last half of 2013, we held a total of 25 clinics that serviced 71 community members. We had over 35 volunteers attorneys from DLA, Fenwick, Cisco, Haynes & Boone, Winston & Strawn, Littler, Baker Botts and private practice that provided those virtual consultations.
The range of legal topic areas included: (in the order of need)
- Family Law
- Small Claims
- Real Estate
- Estate Planning
- Business Organization
- Bankruptcy/Debt Issues
- Intellectual Property
What Is Next
Based on the great response to the pilot clinics in Morgan Hill, Santa Clara County Library has agreed to operate four separate clinics Across the county. We are also working with the U.S Department of Veteran Affairs to provide a first-of-its-kind virtual clinic at a South Bay VA center specifically for veterans and their legal issues. This new virtual clinic will include an intake and general advice clinic as well as a clinic for limited scope representation, all performed virtually!
Currently online training is available for the five most common legal topics areas: immigration, family law, small claims, employment and consumer law, but we are working to expand training to include debt collection, probate and estate issues and real estate law.
Pro Bono Project plans to continue leading the development of this program by increasing host locations, enlisting more volunteer attorneys, and developing an online platform to better manage the sign up and scheduling of the clinics.
Thanks to Our Partners and Sponsors
The program would not exist if not for our Partners & Sponsors including: Fenwick & West, DLA Piper, Cisco Systems, Baker Botts, Kuo Sharper Foundation, Littler Mendelson, Xerox, Detati Communications, Duane Morris, Haynes & Boones, I.O.L.T.A., Lenovo, Winston & Strawn, Wilson, Sonsini, Goodrich & Rosati, Paragon Legal, Santa Clara County Library District
If you would like more information on the Virtual Services Legal Program, have a suggestion for a host location or are an attorney who would like to volunteer your time, please contact Cameron Day at the Pro Bono Project office (408) 998-5298.