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Southern MN Regional Legal Services (SMRLS) Volunteer Attorney Program / Greater Minnesota

SMRLS in Greater Minnesota serves counties across the southern part of the state. Volunteer attorneys provide pro bono services to low-income individuals on civil matters mainly in the areas of family law, adoption, landlord-tenant issues, guardian/conservatorship, unemployment appeal matters, DHS disqualifications, bankruptcies, contract for deed problems, disability law, and wills. 

Volunteer attorneys can take on full representation cases, conduct community education seminars, and assist at Self-Help Divorce Clinics. Law student volunteers are accepted. Attorneys who speak Spanish, Somali, and Southeastern Asian languages are especially needed. 

You can contact SMRLS in Mankato or Winona


  • County(s) of Volunteer Opportunity: Blue Earth, Brown, Cottonwood, Dodge, Faribault, Fillmore, Freeborn, Goodhue, Houston, Jackson, Le Sueur, Martin, McLeod, Mower, Murray, Nicollet, Nobles, Pipestone, Redwood, Rice, Rock, Sibley, Steele, Wabasha, Waseca, Watonwan, Winona
  • Area of law: Civil Rights, Community Development, Consumer, Debt/Credit/Bankruptcy, Disability, Disaster and Emergency Assistance, Education, Elder Law, Employment, Family & Juvenile, Foreclosure, Health, Homeless, Housing, Immigration & Naturalization, Nonprofit Organizations, Public Benefits, Taxes, Veterans
  • Populations Served: Communities of Color, Domestic Violence Victims, Elderly, Farm workers, General Public, Human Trafficking Survivors, Immigrants, Individuals with criminal histories, Individuals with physical/mental disabilities, Juveniles, Lesbian, gay, bisexual & transgender, Low Income, Military/Veterans, Native Americans, Persons with Disabilities, State Residents, Women, Working poor and unemployed
  • Opportunities For: Interpreters, Law Students, Lawyers, Senior Lawyers
  • Need for non-English services: Hmong, Laotian, Signers for the deaf: ASL, Somali, Spanish
  • Hours for Pro Bono Opportunities: Monday-Friday 9am-5pm, Arranged
  • Malpractice insurance is provided for volunteers: Yes
  • Training Provided: Yes
  • Training Required: No
  • CLE credit for trainings: Yes
  • Training / Supervision Comments: CLE credit is usually available for training.
  • CLE credit for pro bono: Yes
  • Mentoring or supervision offered: No
  • Volunteer lawyers need to meet a caseload or hours requirement: No
  • Types of projects in need of Pro Bono help: Alternative dispute resolution (ADR), Client counseling (e.g., brief advice), Hotline staffing, Mentor volunteer lawyers or law students
  • Other Long Distance Opportunities: Brief advice letters
  • Volunteers may participate long-distance: Yes
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Volunteer Profile

Learn about Christopher Mendez, a former Marine and a volunteer in the Microenterprise Project at Volunteers of Legal Service NY.  Our feature speaks of his pro bono journey through NY's 50 hour pro bono requirement, and an insight into the important work of his client, Community Health Worker Connections in the South Bronx. READ MORE

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