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Erie County Bar Association Legal Aid Volunteer Attorneys (LAVA) Program

The Erie County Bar Association Legal Aid Volunteer Attorneys (LAVA) Program has been assisting Erie's low income individuals since 1981. The program was begun in response to funding cuts to Legal Services, the organization providing free civil legal services to low income individuals. The LAVA Program matches private attorneys with eligible individuals needing civil legal services. Administration and screening for eligibility is handled by Northwestern Legal Services. Potential clients must be eligible both financially and by their type of case. Clients should call 452-6957 or 1-800-665-6957 to determine eligibility.
  • County of Volunteer Opportunity: Erie
  • Area of law: Debt/Credit/Bankruptcy, Limited Custody and Visitation, Limited Support, No-fault Divorce Clinic, Section 3301(d) Divorce, Wills/Powers of Attorney/Guardianship, Unemployment Compensation, and Motor Vehicle License Suspension
  • Populations Served: Children, Domestic Violence Victims, Elderly, Low Income
  • Opportunities For: Lawyers, Nonlitigation Projects, Paralegals
  • Hours for Pro Bono Opportunities: Monday-Friday 9am-5pm
  • Malpractice insurance is provided for volunteers: Yes
  • Training Provided: Yes
  • Training Required: No
  • CLE credit for trainings: Yes
  • Training / supervision comments: Some trainings are offered for CLE, as well as reduced cost CLE training opportunities for volunteers.
  • CLE credit for pro bono: No
  • Mentoring or supervision offered: No
  • Volunteer lawyers need to meet a caseload or hours requirement: No
  • Volunteers may participate long-distance: No
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Volunteer Profile

Neil Steinkamp

Rebecca Berlow, a corporate attorney, has worked as a volunteer with The Legal Aid Society's Immigration Unit Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals ("DACA") clinics and has assisted the Society with disaster relief efforts, greatly improving their Access to Benefits hotline by developing a new intake system. Learn more

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