Volunteering for Pro Bono Work has many benefits, including:
Practical experience. You will get the opportunity to do hands-on legal work that will provide you with experience and add value to your resume.
Connections with legal professionals in the community. Through your volunteer work, you will be rewarded with several valuable networking opportunities.
Service to the community and individuals in need. You are providing a real service to people and making a difference in their lives.
You will stand out in the job market by volunteering. Legal volunteer work demonstrates character, maturity and work ethic.
Professional skills improvement, such as legal research and writing, and public speaking.
Develop a writing sample.
About the Volunteer Lawyers Programs (VLP) in Alabama:
It is estimated that more than 900,000 people live in poverty in Alabama. One in four low-income family members will require legal assistance during any given year. This means at least 225,000 Alabama citizens will need legal help. Legal Services Alabama, the statewide Alabama legal aid program, has approximately one attorney for every 5,000 persons that qualify for and need civil legal assistance in Alabama. LSA with its current staff and resources, cannot adequately serve the low-income citizens of our state using its staff alone.
The Volunteer Lawyers Program (VLP) in Alabama began statewide in 1991 and is a project of the Alabama State Bar. Modeled after the highly successful Mobile Bar Association Volunteer Lawyers Program, it provides a way for lawyers in Alabama to help their communities. Attorneys enroll in the program by agreeing to provide up to 20 hours, per year, of free legal service to poor citizens of Alabama. Cases are referred to the VLP from Legal Services Alabama offices around the state. Before referral, legal services staff screen the cases for merit and complexity (each case should be resolvable in 20 hours or less) and the potential client is screened for income eligibility (they must live at or below 125 percent of the poverty level, currently $2,484 monthly, for a household of four).