Public Resources

Pro Bono / Access to Legal Services

Pro Bono 2014 Conference Ad

2014 Conference Registration (PDF file)

Resolution to Enhance Pro Bono Publico in Virginia

Access to Legal Services Committee

Mission Statement
Members
Meeting Dates/Locations

photos from prior conferences
agenda for upcoming conferences

Awards

Articles

Is there a Pro Bono Gap in Virginia? article from the February 2014 issue of Virginia Lawyer (PDF file)

Links

Pro Bono Training and Events Calendar

Webinars

All programs will be submitted for MCLE credit. There is no registration fee for the webinars; however, registrants are asked to certify during registration that they will accept a pro bono referral from a pro bono legal services organization or, in the alternative, make a financial contribution to a pro bono legal services organization. Additional webinar registration links coming soon.

"Before You Say "Yes" to Serving on a Board, Know What Is Expected: Part 1- Duties and Responsibilities of Board Members" -- Tuesday, September 23, 2014 3:00 pm. We may be asked to serve on the board of our swim club, food bank, church, YMCA, hospital, day care center, or countless other nonprofits within our community. Our commitment to community service is a core value. With commitment and pride, we accept. However, in accepting, we assume duties as a board member many of which have little to do with raising money. The law imposes on each board member three fiduciary duties – the duty of obedience, the duty of care, and the duty of loyalty. This webinar will provide an overview of the law of nonprofit organizations and discuss how each of these duties come into play as we exercise our role of director or trustee. Nonprofit organizations are highly complex organizations bound by many laws. This free webinar - the first of three in this series - will give you a framework for being a good board member. 

This program is open to attorneys and non-attorneys. Attorneys seeking CLE credit for their attendance are asked to certify during registration that they will render pro bono publico legal services (such as poverty law, civil rights law, public interest law, and volunteer activities designed to increase the availability of pro bono legal services) per Rule 6.1 of the Virginia Rules of Professional Conduct in an amount at least commensurate with the MCLE credit earned. 1.5 hours of MCLE Credit approved for this program.

The Pro Bono and Board Governance webinar series is co-sponsored by the Virginia State Bar, the Pro Bono Clearinghouse of the Greater Richmond Bar Foundation, and Sands Anderson PC. 

Pro Bono and Special Immigrant Juveniles: Best Practices for Family Court Practitioners on Friday, October 3, 2014 1:00 pm. Between January 1 and July 7, 2014, nearly 2300 unaccompanied, undocumented minor children were placed in Virginia with sponsors, usually family members. As a result, Virginia ranks as the state with the fifth highest number of undocumented child placements, behind only Texas, California, Florida, and New York. These numbers will only increase in the coming months as the federal Office of Refugee Resettlement works to satisfy critical shelter needs. Some of these children qualify for “special immigrant juvenile status (SIJS)”—an immigration status conferred by the federal government if the state court makes certain factual findings. Because the state court is the designated fact-finder in the federal law that created this immigration status, and in light of the large numbers of undocumented children presently residing in Virginia, it is critical that Virginia practitioners in J&DR courts receive education and instruction about the parameters, scope and procedures underlying this important federal immigration benefit. Moreover, volunteer lawyers are needed to file the state court proceedings and receive the appropriate predicate order required by U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services.

This CLE program will provide attendees with an understanding of the provisions of the federal law governing special immigrant juvenile status; appropriate pleadings and forms required for these state court proceedings; instruction about handling these state court proceedings; and connection with a pro bono network that can identify appropriate cases for family lawyers and partner them with experienced immigration attorneys. Attendees are asked to certify during registration that, if they feel competent following the training, they will accept one pro bono referral to represent an unaccompanied, undocumented youth in J&DR court proceedings. 2.0 hours MCLE credit approved and 2.0 Guardian ad Litem continuing education credit approved.

This training is sponsored by the Virginia State Bar Access to Legal Services Committee, the Legal Aid Justice Center, Ayuda, and the Poarch Law Firm. 

Representing Victims of Domestic Violence: Part 1 - Introduction and Opportunities. Tuesday, October 7, 12:00 to 1:00 p.m. The issue of domestic violence has recently been in the news but there is little attention given to the process for getting protective orders or the need for attorneys to provide pro bono assistance to victims and survivors of domestic violence. This webinar is the first session of a five-part series for volunteer lawyers interested in representing victims of domestic violence in Virginia courts. Part 1 will provide an overview of the series and will cover the following topics:  

  1. What Is Pro Bono? Rule 6.1 of the Virginia Rules of Professional Conduct;
  2. Overview of the Programs: How and Where Attorneys Can Find Pro Bono Opportunities to Represent Victims of Domestic Violence;
  3. Overview of the Court Process: What Happens with DV Cases in Juvenile & Domestic Relations Court, General District Court and Circuit Courts.

Future webinars in this series will focus on the nuts and bolts of protective orders; custody, visitation and support issues; and immigration implications of VAWA-360 and U-Visas. This webinar series is co-sponsored by the VSB Special Committee on Access to Legal Services, Good Samaritan Advocates, and the Virginia Poverty Law Center. 1.0 hour of MCLE credit pending for this program.

Co-sponsored by Good Samaritan Advocates and the Virginia Poverty Law Center.

Before You Say "Yes" to Serving on a Board, Know What is Expected: Part 2 - Ethical issues for Attorney-Directors and Pro Bono Lawyers. Wednesday, October 15, 2:00 to 3:30 p.m. For attorneys, working with a nonprofit organization can be a rewarding way to serve the community and meet pro bono obligations. Rule 6.1 of the Virginia Rules of Professional Conduct sets forth a commitment of 2% of the lawyer’s professional time. Many nonprofits are eager to work with lawyers, either as Board members, counsel to the nonprofit, cooperating referral attorneys, or all of the above. While many ethical issues that arise in the context of nonprofits mirror those that arise in a lawyer’s practice outside the nonprofit context, there are some issues that are unique to nonprofits. Also, many in the bar provide pro bono services through volunteering at Legal Aid or directly through their firm. This webinar will focus on the ethical expectations of attorneys providing pro bono services in either capacity. 

Attorneys seeking CLE credit for their attendance are asked to certify during registration that they will render pro bono publico legal services (such as poverty law, civil rights law, public interest law, and volunteer activities designed to increase the availability of pro bono legal services) per Rule 6.1 of the Virginia Rules of Professional Conduct in an amount at least commensurate with the MCLE credit earned. 1.5 hours of MCLE Credit pending for this program.

The Pro Bono and Board Governance webinar series is co-sponsored by the Virginia State Bar, the Pro Bono Clearinghouse of the Greater Richmond Bar Foundation, and Sands Anderson PC. 

Before You Say "Yes" to Serving on a Board, Know What is Expected: Part 3 - Nine Key Components. Wednesday, October 15, 2:00 to 3:00 p.m. Nonprofits operate in a highly regulated and very transparent environment. In deciding to serve, it is more than just doing good and/or giving financial support– a board member has an unique stewardship role in the organization. This webinar will introduce the participants to the top 10 good governance practices that are hallmarks of successful nonprofits boards: (1) Board recruitment and orientation; (2) the significance of the Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws; (3) committee structure and board oversight; (4) delegation and accountability of the Officers and CEO; (5) liability and indemnification; (6) the importance of the Form 990; (7) oversight of revenue activities and fundraising; (8) protection of assets; (9) annual registrations and reports.

This program is open to attorneys and non-attorneys. Attorneys seeking CLE credit for their attendance are asked to certify during registration that they will render pro bono publico legal services (such as poverty law, civil rights law, public interest law, and volunteer activities designed to increase the availability of pro bono legal services) per Rule 6.1 of the Virginia Rules of Professional Conduct in an amount at least commensurate with the MCLE credit earned. 1.5 hours of MCLE Credit pending for this program.

The Pro Bono and Board Governance webinar series is co-sponsored by the Virginia State Bar, the Pro Bono Clearinghouse of the Greater Richmond Bar Foundation, and Sands Anderson PC.  

Additional Upcoming Webinars

Representing Victims of Domestic Violence: Part 2 - Protective Orders. Co-sponsored by Good Samaritan Advocates and the Virginia Poverty Law Center. Thursday, October 16, 2:00 to 3:30 p.m.

Representing Victims of Domestic Violence: Part 3 - Custody, Visitation, and Support Issues. Co-sponsored by Good Samaritan Advocates and the Virginia Poverty Law Center. Tuesday, October 28, 12:00 to 1:30 p.m.

Pro Bono Spotlight

featuring law offices, lawyers and law students providing exemplary pro bono (to come)

Access to Justice News

articles and blogs from other sources about access to justice issues (to come)

Updated: Sep 15, 2014