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Our platform facilitates private sector pro bono legal work that strives to alleviate short-term needs while strengthening the community.

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How it works

  1. Lawyers commit to blocks of pro bono time
  2. Volunteered time is categorized, grouped, and combined according to specialty and skillset, then leveraged with matching hours from law students
  3. Pro bono time is allocated to specific legal needs outside the scope of existing legal aid structures
  4. Recipients commit to volunteering time based on their resources and abilities
  5. Volunteered time is categorized and grouped, then deployed to address needs in the community
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A Pandemic on two fronts

The COVID-19 pandemic has threatened to overwhelm our healthcare infrastructure. Not far behind is a threat to overwhelm our legal system and resources.

During one month in New York, 45% of legal aid inquiries were related to COVID-19. Questions ranged from the pandemic’s impact on evictions to insurance coverage, consumer rights, public benefits, and employment law. As with pandemic healthcare, access to legal services is unequal.

Remote work and limited access to courtrooms have complicated the legal aid system. And as legal needs increase across the population, legal aid budgets are bottoming out. By cutting interest rates broadly, economic stimulus efforts have zeroed out interest rates on traditional funding sources like lawyers’ trust accounts.

In this moment of crisis, there has been a major increase in demand and a significant decrease in funding for legal aid.
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The Advocacy Gap

Gillian Hadfield, a law professor and researcher at the University of Toronto, estimates that each American lawyer would need to provide 900 hours of pro bono work per year to provide for the legal needs of every household.

Existing legal aid programs provide vital support for these needs. But as demand grows, programs face decreased funding. And complex commercial, employment, and constitutional issues are more suited for the private practice bar.

Proactively addressing these legal needs in the short-term preserves resources long-term. A family struggling with foreclosure now might get through their crisis with legal help. But without it, the family would lose their home, become homeless, and need substantial public benefits to survive.

Empathy Through Action

Charitable giving is near an all-time high, but empathy is on the decline. As check-writing replaces volunteer work, community members don’t develop the empathy that comes with conversations and connection.

A study at Indiana University examined 104,000 people from 63 countries, identifying nations with higher and lower levels of empathy. In countries with high levels of empathy, rates of volunteerism — but not charitable giving — were also high.

We believe that in addressing this legal crisis, we must go beyond the legal community and work to create empathy that is stronger than the politics of division.
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