Legal Aid Society

The Legal Aid Society, the nation's oldest and largest provider of free legal services to the indigent, has been part of New York City's social fabric since 1876. Through a network of neighborhood and court-based offices, the Society provides a full range of civil legal services as well as criminal defense work and juvenile rights representation in Family Court. Through individual representation and major class action law reform, our staff of 850 lawyers and 600 social workers, paralegals, investigators and support and administrative personnel annually handle more than 300,000 legal matters for individuals and families who cannot afford counsel. The Society's landmark law reform cases benefit virtually the entire low income population of 2 million children and adults in the City and have State-wide and National impact.

Last year, more than 2,000 attorneys and paralegals - primarily from New York's leading law firms and corporate law departments - handled 2,200 matters on behalf of our clients. Pro bono work ranged from complex litigation to staffing an immigration hotline. Many of these matters are part of a law firm project in which the firm, under partner leadership, staffs a number of cases annually. Other cases are placed with firms through regular case list distributions. Society staff members meet with firms to discuss developing a customized pro bono project or individual case referrals.

Corporate Pro Bono

Corporate law departments collaborate with The Legal Aid Society on a diverse range of discrete pro bono projects. Many times, it is a three-way partnership, including a leading law firm. Projects have included a business audit for low-income micro entrepreneurs and assisting immigrants with completion of naturalization papers.

Please contact our Pro Bono Administrator, Katie Niejadlik, at (212) 577-3919 or, to apply for an externship or receive additional information about pro bono projects, individual cases, and Second Acts®. The Legal Aid Society's website at provides additional information about our pro bono program.