News and Information
September 03, 2013

Registration Open for “An Introduction to Pro Bono: We Can All Do Something” – Webinar October 21

Celebrate Pro Bono Webinar

 “An Introduction to Pro Bono: We Can All Do Something”

Registration has reached capacity as of October 1. Look for the next free webinar in early December.

Monday, October 21, 2013, 2–3:00 p.m.

Session Description: As the legal community recognizes Celebrate Pro Bono Week, the need for pro bono services nationally is greater than ever during these challenging economic times.  According to the October 2012 Report of the Pro Bono Task Force of the Legal Services Corporation, nearly one in five Americans qualifies for civil legal aid assistance. Further, there has been an “explosion” in the demand for legal services, especially after the foreclosure crisis, as well as a significant increase in legal matters involving Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans, health care, predatory lending, and immigration issues. At the same time, funding of legal aid and non-profit law offices which provide legal assistance to the poor has been severely cut. Against this backdrop, studies have found that 80 percent of the legal needs of low income people go unserved. Hence, there is a critical need for assistance from the private bar in order to help to offset the justice gap facing those lacking the economic resources to retain counsel.

This webinar will serve as an introduction to pro bono and overview of what constitutes pro bono, why more pro bono lawyers are needed in Virginia, and the rules of professional conduct that govern pro bono work. Participants will also be provided with information about resources that can assist them as they engage in pro bono work.

Registration now closed.

Learning Objectives: During this webinar, attendees will:

  1. Learn about the justice gap experienced by the poor and how pro bono can help alleviate the crisis in legal representation provided to the poor;
  2. Receive information about the Rules of Professional Conduct that specifically address pro bono representation issues;
  3. Gain a greater appreciation as to why every attorney should be able to provide some type of pro  bono assistance;
  4. Be able to identify and gain access to the resources to assist them as they provide pro bono legal assistance.


  • Joanna Suyes*, Marks and Harrison; Chair, Virginia State Bar Access to Legal Services Committee
  • Alexandra Fannon*, Executive Director, Greater Richmond Bar Foundation
  • Erin E. Layman*, Erin E. Layman, PLC, Harrisonburg
  • Christopher M. Malone, ThompsonMcMullan, P.C., Richmond   


  1. Welcome and Introduction of Presenters – Karl Doss, VSB, Access to Legal Services Director (5 minutes)
  1. Pro Bono – What is it? Why Is It Needed? Where Are There Opportunities for Pro Bono Work? – Speaker TBD (15 minutes)
  1. Overview of Rules of Professional Conduct that Apply to Pro Bono Practice – Joanna Suyes (15 minutes)
  1. Handling a Pro Bono Case: One Lawyer’s Experience – Erin Layman  (10 min)
  1. You Are Not Alone – Resources and Assistance – Ali Fannon  (10 min)  
  1. Questions – Wrap Up – Karl Doss (5 min)


originally posted 9/3/13

Updated: Oct 01, 2013