Using Technology to Unbundle in the Legal Services Community
Thursday, March 07, 2013
- Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma, Inc.
March 2012, Stephanie Kimbro, M.A., J.D. wrote the Limited Scope Legal Services: Unbundling and the Self-Help Client for the American Bar Associations Law Practice Management Section. As a part of her research, Kimbro turned to the legal services community. Legal Services Corporation Program Counsel for Technology, Glenn Rawdon, provided specific examples of current use of unbundling by legal services organizations.
As front line to the problems of access to justice for low-income litigants, legal services organizations have adapted a triage approach to helping self-represented litigants who would be otherwise shut out of the legal system. From advice on how to diffuse a problem or handle a court appearance, to preparation of letters and court forms, limited entries of appearance to full litigation and volunteer lawyers, legal services programs must apply services in a triage fashion to make the most effective use of scarce funding and staff resources. Creative and innovative applications of technology, funded by the Technology Initiative Grants through the Legal Services Corporation have greatly expanded the tools available to legal services programs and the courts, struggling to increase access to our most vulnerable citizens.
January 2013, Kimbro presented this informative paper, Using Technology to Unbundle in the Legal Services Community to the LSC Summit on Technology and Access to Justice, a gathering of the community's best, brightest and most innovative thinkers on the application of technology to assist self-represented litigants, legal services programs and the court provide the greatest access and services with limited resources.
Kimbro's work recently posted online by Harvard's Journal of Law and Technology along with other papers from the LSC Summit and other thoughtful and innovative writings on a wide variety of subjects related to the law and technology field.
Please take a few minutes to read Stephanie Kimbro's paper and consider integrating some of these applications to your life as a volunteer lawyer. Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma has many ways you can assist our clients, from exciting new technology applications to the face-to-face encounter.
Check out Legal Aid's Pro Bono page and join the access to justice movement in Oklahoma http://www.probono.net/ok/civillaw/pb_projects/