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Spokane County Bar Association Volunteer Lawyers Program

If you are a member of the public interested in inquiring about eligibility to receive services:  Please call CLEAR, Washington State’s centralized intake line @ 1-888-201-1014, between the hours of 9:15 am and 12:15 pm, Monday through Friday.  Calling CLEAR is the preferred way of being referred to the Volunteer Lawyers Program.   The other option is to call the VLP Client Intake Line only on Mondays between 1-5 pm and Wednesdays between 1-4 pm.  That number is 509-324-0144, and is only to be called during our Monday and Wednesday afternoon intake hours.

If you are an attorney, paralegal, or law student interested in volunteering:  The majority of our clients are looking for assistance in Family Law. Most of them are assisted through our advice clinics (Family Law, Divorce and Status Conference) which are constructed to act as a self-help (pro se) process to guide them through their legal issue. These consultations can vary from reviewing paperwork, preparing them for a hearing, reviewing their file to determine their next steps or preparing them for trial. Direct representation for Family Law cases is not guaranteed due to the need exceeding the number of volunteer attorneys available.

In the area of Consumer Law our program offers assistance with Chapter 7 bankruptcies. All of the clients we provide services to are referred out for direct representation. This is done after the client completes gathering most of the initial information and attends our Bankruptcy Information Clinic and meets with one of our volunteer attorneys. We also provide volunteer attorneys on the summary judgment docket in Superior Court and District Court on Friday mornings. These attorneys review the file and provide limited representation to clients dealing with Consumer Issues.

We provide volunteer attorneys Monday through Thursday at the Unlawful Detainer Docket in Superior Court. Attorneys provide counsel and advice to clients, most of which need help negotiating more time to leave the property. In specific cases where defenses are present, our volunteer attorneys assist the clients at their hearing as long as they meet our financial qualifications.

We assist with various other areas of law depending on the available resources at the time. This could include consultations or taking on clients for direct representation.

  • County(s) of Volunteer Opportunity: Spokane
  • Area of law: Consumer, Debt/Credit/Bankruptcy, Family & Juvenile, Housing, Contracts, Estate Planning, and Wills
  • Populations Served: Low Income
  • Opportunities For: Law Students, Lawyers, Mentors, Senior Lawyers
  • Need for non-English services: Russian, Spanish, Please check with the program.
  • Hours for Pro Bono Opportunities: Flexible, Family Law Advice Clinic (Monday afternoons from 1-4pm), Divorce Advice Clinic (2nd and 4th Tuesday evening of each month at 5:15pm until completed), Status Conference Advice Clinics (Thursday mornings at 8:30am until completed- usually by 11am)
  • Malpractice insurance is provided for volunteers: Yes
  • Training Provided: Yes
  • Training Required: No
  • CLE credit for trainings: No
  • Training / Supervision Comments: Please check with the program regarding training opportunities and potential CLE credit for training.
  • CLE credit for pro bono: Yes
  • Mentoring or supervision offered: Yes
  • Volunteer lawyers need to meet a caseload or hours requirement: No
  • Types of projects in need of Pro Bono help: Client counseling (e.g., brief advice), Litigation: Trial/Direct Representation
  • Volunteers may participate long-distance: No
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Volunteer Profile

Kate Powers is an associate in the litigation department at Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP. She holds a J.D. from Cornell Law School where she served as a Notes Editor of the Cornell International Law Journal. She currently volunteers with Her Justice in New York. Read More

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