Volunteer Lawyers Network

VLN provides free legal services to those in poverty through volunteer lawyers.

Volunteer attorneys provide legal services in primarily three ways:

  1. Clinics - attorneys go to specific sites and meet with clients to provide legal advice and brief legal services. This also includes our forms-completion services.
  2. Phone advice - attorneys in their office provide legal advice over the phone.
  3. Full representation - attorneys provide full representation for a court matter.

Areas of greatest client need include:

  • Bankruptcy
  • Family (divorce or custody)
  • Debtor/creditor issues
  • Consumer issues
  • Housing
  • Real estate
  • Criminal expungement
  • There are also some opportunities in the areas of employment, administrative, immigration and tax law
Volunteer Opportunity Locations: primarily in Hennepin County, but statewide opportunities are also available.

VLN provides a variety of support to its volunteers, including:

Help to learn the law

  • Comprehensive resources, manuals and forms
  • Volunteer mentor attorneys
  • VLN's resource attorneys
  • Low-cost CLEs
  • Tips of the month

Administrative help

  • Malpractice insurance for any VLN client (including clinics)
  • Administrative support (conference rooms, use of our mailing address, phone messages)
  • Volunteer letterhead template
  • Access to a laptop with bankruptcy software


  • CLE credit for your Pro Bono hours (up to six per cycle)
  • Administrative support to get IFP signed, paperwork filed (varies by program area)
  • Clinic assistants to help provide brief services
  • County(s) of Volunteer Opportunity: Hennepin
  • Area of law: Consumer, Debt/Credit/Bankruptcy, Employment, Family & Juvenile, Housing, Immigration & Naturalization, Taxes, Real Estate, Expungements
  • Populations Served: Low Income, Working poor and unemployed
  • Opportunities For: Interpreters, Lawyers, Mentors, Nonlitigation Projects, Paralegals, Senior Lawyers
  • Need for non-English services: Spanish
  • Hours for Pro Bono Opportunities: Evenings, Flexible, Monday-Friday 9am-5pm, Weekends
  • Malpractice insurance is provided for volunteers: Yes
  • Training Provided: Yes
  • Training Required: No
  • CLE credit for trainings: Yes
  • CLE credit for pro bono: Yes
  • Mentoring or supervision offered: Yes
  • Volunteer lawyers need to meet a caseload or hours requirement: No
  • Long Distance Opportunities: Mentor Volunteer Lawyers
  • Other Long Distance Opportunities: Telephone Advice, Brief Services, Form Completion
  • Volunteers may participate long-distance: Yes
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