Current Pro Bono Cases

 

 

Alaska Legal Services Corporation Pro Bono Cases

 

Please contact Laura Goss at ALSC for information about these pro bono opportunities.

907-222-4521 or lgoss@alsc-law.org

 

(Updated 1/2/2020)

 

ALSC pro bono cases make up approximately 12% of all cases statewide annually. 

  • Average time commitment on an ALSC pro bono case is just 11 hours, and in 2018, most (86%) of ALSC pro bono cases were completed by a volunteer attorney in 10 hours or less.
  • In 2018-2019 only 16% of pro bono cases went to court.

Taking a pro bono case with ALSC comes with a variety of supports, including

  • Malpractice Insurance
  • Mentorship for those taking on a case in a new practice area
  • Access to online resources, including a brief bank, legal webinars, and templates
  • Waiver of court filing fees
  • Reimbursement of expenses
  • Use of our office space to meet with your pro bono clients or prepare for your cases

Current Cases needing a Pro Bono Attorney:

 

AN-19-32930

Spanish-speaking documented immigrant needs help with a bankruptcy. His debt is mainly from credit cards used when he lost his job.  ALSC will reimburse you for the cost of an in-person or phone interpreter.

 

PA-19-37951

Woman, her husband, and four children, who live in Wasilla, suffered carbon monoxide poisoning in 2015 while living in a rental property, rendering them permanently disabled.  There was a settlement of $552,500, but it still needs to be allocated among the six plaintiffs.  Client needs assistance closing out the settlement.  There are no pending court hearings. 

 

AN-19-37150

Alaska Native man owed a property in Anchorage which went into foreclosure.  His Power of Attorney has filed two separate actions, one in small claims court to recover money she leant the client to repair his home for selling and one for the damages to the property and loss of money, since the scheduled repairs were never completed and the sale fell through. Opposing party has moved to consolidate the two cases and has filed answers.  He needs an attorney to work with the Breach of Contract claim.

 

AN-19-37106

Victim of marital domestic violence needs an attorney to obtain a divorce from her brief marriage. She sustained substantial injuries from one incident causing her diminished function of her arm and shoulder, affecting her ability to work and live an active lifestyle, resulting in $25,000+ in medical bills for this injury.  Trial date is set for 2/4/20; a motion to continue the trial date has been filed.  A divorce lawyer with personal injury claim experience would be beneficial.  This would be a good case to request attorney’s fees.

 

FA-19-35594

Young Alaska Native man with FASD which causes his illiteracy has a claim of disability discrimination against his past employer.  He was denied requested accommodation with assistance in taking a training questionnaire/test and was subsequently fired for failing the exam.  A lawyer is wanted to help him prove his claim of disability discrimination. 

 

PA-19-36120

Disabled woman needs a lawyer in the Mat-Su Valley to help her to file a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy.  Most of her debts are credit cards.  She will need Alaska exemptions to protect her house.    

 

AN-19-32996

Alaska Native man had a default judgement entered against him in 1996 related to a car accident.  He first learned of this (service was deemed satisfied through a Notice to Absent Defendant) when denied for a driver’s license in 2000.  He did not own a vehicle at the time of the accident.  He would like to file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, after consulting with two attorneys about this matter. 

 

KN-19-36727

Woman in Kenai experienced substantial home damage in the 2018 earthquake.  After inspection, it was determined she only had $1296 in damages. She appealed and was told by FEMA she needed a contractor to declare the damages are worse that originally determined.  The contractor wrote a letter to FEMA stating the house is a total loss due to foundation damage and that repairs are not feasible.  FEMA denied this claim because no bid was submitted by the contractor (because no work was to be done by him), although they accepted that the house is a total loss.  She was told FEMA would give her $30,000 if contractors would submit bids.

 

AN-19-36397

Woman in Trapper Creek (she will come to Anchorage to meet with her attorney) needs a lawyer to investigate the Equal Pay Act claim; also potential breach of covenant of good faith and fair dealing.  She feels she was fired due to her age (63) and gender.  She has current and past employees to substantiate her claim.

 

Unbundled Pro Bono Opportunities with ALSC:

 

Advice and Counsel Clinics

Provide basic screening and one-time legal assistance for a low-income Alaskan with a civil legal need, either in-person or by phone.  Specific clinics are scheduled with one-hour consultations for Employment, Bankruptcy, Veterans, Family Law, Landlord/Tenant, Wills and Probate, and General Matters.  Volunteering for clinics typically involves 3-7 hours per day/clinic, once a quarter, and most are booked according to your schedule.  Contact Laura Goss at ALSC for more information.  907-222-4521 or LGoss@alsc-law.org.

 

Landlord/Tenant Hotline

During one 2 hour evening shift per month, you will answer calls from Alaskans with questions about their current situation.  Your main resource is the Landlord/Tenant Act Handbook.  You will receive calls at any phone of your choice.  Contact Laura Goss at ALSC for more information.  907-222-4521 or LGoss@alsc-law.org.

 

Housing Court Justice Project

Assist Pro Se low-income tenants or low-income landlords (if the other side has an attorney) in Eviction Court.  You will be present at Anchorage District Court one morning per month for 2 hours to provide limited assistance to clients scheduled for eviction proceedings such as: legal counseling, negotiating settlement agreements, representation in an eviction hearing, and drafting any relevant documents, such as pleadings and answers.  Contact Laura Goss at ALSC for more information.  907-222-4521 or LGoss@alsc-law.org.

 

Early Resolution Project (ERP) – Anchorage – Palmer – Kenai – Juneau 

In one afternoon, you will offer free legal advice to family law pro se litigants referred by the Alaska Court System, who they have deemed as easy to resolve with attorney assistance.  You will meet privately with your client and work out an amicable agreement between both parties that same day.  86% of ERP cases are amicably completed that afternoon.  ERP volunteers are needed in Anchorage, Palmer, Juneau, and Kenai.  ERP sessions are held once per month in each city except Anchorage where it is held weekly.  Contact Laura Goss at ALSC for more information.  You can schedule to participate depending on your availability.  907-222-4521 or LGoss@alsc-law.org.

 

Pro Bono Attorney Mentoring Opportunity  

The Pro Bono Training Academy (PBTA) is an exciting initiative aimed at increasing support for our pro bono volunteers.  We hope to do this in many ways, one of which is by creating a mentoring system wherein experienced volunteer attorneys mentor newer volunteer attorneys in specific areas of the law.  Hopefully, knowing they are supported will encourage attorneys to take on more complex cases on a volunteer basis.  We are looking for experienced attorneys interested in serving as a mentor attorney.  We are also very interested in your ideas about what such a program should look like.  If you want to serve Alaska’s low-income population by sharing your legal expertise, please contact: Sarah Carver, Project Coordinator, Pro Bono Training Academy, scarver@alsc-law.org, 907.406.2222.

 


Alaska Network on Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault—Legal Advocacy Program

 

(Updated 12/6/2019)

  1. Homer custody. Case not yet filed.  Relatively simple and could be a good case for a beginner volunteer! DV includes strangulation, assault.  Opposing party has history of substance abuse.  Opposing party is out of state and has had minimal contact with child.    
  2. Nome custody modification. Motion to modify not yet filed.  DV includes assault.  Client needs to modify custody because of OP limiting her contact with the child, continued harassment. 
  3. Anchorage divorce/custody/paternity. Uncontested divorce hearing on 1/14/20, but case being converted to contested divorce.  2 kids, and paternity needs to be disestablished for 2 other children.  Bad DV in the past, opposing party is out of state. 
  4. *Low bono* Kenai custody. Trial call 1/8/20, trial week 1/20/20.  Case is fully prepped for trial by outgoing ANDVSA staff attorney.  1 child.  DV includes punching, shoving, forced sex.  ANDVSA can pay $75/hour up to 30 hours. 
  5. *Low bono* Kodiak custody. Trial call 1/21/20, trial 2/10-2/11/20.  Case is fully prepped for trial by outgoing ANDVSA staff attorney.  1 child.  DV hearing has already been held and interim custody order issued.  Trial will center on best interests of the child and client’s progress in substance abuse recovery.  ANDVSA can pay $75/hour up to 30 hours. 

 

Any questions and/or interest in the above cases, please contact Katy Soden @ 907-297-2791 or ksoden@andvsa.org.


Alaska Immigration Justice Project – Pro Bono Asylum Project

(Updated 7/8/2019)

 

The Alaska Immigration Justice Project will provide training and mentoring for pro bono attorneys willing to take on an asylum case or a Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (“SIJS”) guardianship case. 

 

Asylum #1 – Husband and wife from Latin America seek asylum due to political persecution.   Need  pro bono attorney(s) to file affirmative asylum applications with Department of Homeland Security.

 

Asylum #2 – Young professional from Latin America seeks asylum due to political persecution.   Need  pro bono attorney to file affirmative asylum applications with Department of Homeland Security.

 

Please contact Dan Rodgers at (907) 279-2457 or dan.rodgers@akijp.org if interested in receiving more information.