Volunteer for the NYLAG Consumer Credit Volunteer Lawyer for the Day (VLFD) Program

The Consumer Credit Volunteer Lawyer for the Day (VLFD) program is an innovative court program, which provides limited-scope, day-only representation to unrepresented litigants in consumer debt cases. 

This is an ideal opportunity for a law student, recent law graduate or admitted attorney to gain litigation skills with the close guidance of an on-site supervising attorney. Volunteers have the unparalleled opportunity to represent clients in court, negotiate with opposing counsel, and argue motions before a judge. 

Currently, there are thousands of debt collection cases in New York City every year.  About 98% of defendants in these cases appear unrepresented. This often leads to intimidation through the legal system and abuses in the collections process. Volunteers provide critical assistance to individuals who otherwise may be unable to defend themselves.

The Consumer Credit Volunteer Lawyer for a Day program (VLFD) seeks several volunteers to represent clients on-site in the Bronx, Queens, or Staten Island Civil Courts. 

Qualifications

The ideal candidate will: 

  • Be a current law student, a recent law graduate (who took the first available bar exam post law school), or an admitted New York attorney 
  • Be able to communicate effectively 
  • Have strong attention to detail
  • Have a positive attitude 
  • Have strong desire to be involved in litigation and client advocacy
  • Have a professional demeanor, even under pressure
  • Be punctual
  • Be able to handle a fast-paced environment
  • Be able to take direction and feedback constructively
  • Be able to adapt to a changing court environment and handle unexpected situations

More about NYLAG: The New York Legal Assistance Group (NYLAG) provides free civil legal services to low-income New Yorkers.  NYLAG clients include immigrants, seniors, the homebound, families facing foreclosure, renters facing eviction, low-income consumers, those in need of government assistance, children in need of special education, domestic violence survivors, persons with disabilities, patients with chronic illness or disease, low-wage workers, low-income members of the LGBT community, Holocaust survivors, and others in need.

To Apply: E-mail resume and cover letter indicating your interest in consumer credit issues, social justice, and/or civil litigation to volunteer@nylag.org with “Consumer VLFD” in the subject line.

New York Legal Assistance Group (NYLAG)/Total Life Choices (TLC) and Asian American Bar Association of New York (AABANY) Pro Bono Listing for August 2014

PARENTS SEEKING ARTICLE 17A GUARDIANSHIP OVER THEIR 18-YEAR-OLD SON

(Mandarin and Cantonese Speaker)

Mr. and Mrs. Y are the parents of an autistic child, F.  F is an autistic 18 year-old.  Mr. and Mrs. Y seek assistance with an article 17a guardianship.  Physician affidavits have been completed.  Mr. and Mrs. Y’s primary language is Mandarin and Cantonese, but they are able to understand and communicate in English.  We are seeking a pro bono attorney, preferably an attorney who also speaks Mandarin or Cantonese, to assist Mr. and Mrs. Y on this guardianship matter.

If you are interested in assisting with this matter on a pro bono basis, please send an email to NYLAG Senior Staff attorney and TLC Program coordinator, Tina Janssen-Spinosa, at: tlc@nylag.org and to Samuel Lui at: Samuel.lui@aabany.org

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* NYLAG offers mentoring support on most cases we refer to pro bono attorneys, which includes provision of training materials and sample documents, as well as direct consultation  with a NYLAG attorney and review of document drafts.  If no mentoring is available, this will be stated clearly in a matter description.

* NYLAG is required to report the number of hours spent on client matters by our pro bono attorneys, so we ask attorneys who accept client referrals to keep track of their time on cases as well as the amount of any costs incurred on matters.  NYLAG requests reports on hours and costs from our pro bono attorneys on an annual basis, shortly after the end of each fiscal year (June 30th).

* NYLAG’s malpractice insurance policy only extends to volunteer attorneys who work directly under NYLAG’s supervision on matters in which NYLAG itself has been retained as counsel.  Therefore, pro bono attorneys who accept case referrals are responsible for their own malpractice insurance.

* NYLAG provides CLE credit for pro bono service (1 credit per 2 hours of service, up to 10 credits per biennial reporting cycle).  To obtain credit, please contact NYLAG to obtain the necessary forms.