JDC's Community Organization Representation Project (CORP)

The Justice & Diversity Center's (JDC) Community Organization Representation Project (CORP) provides pro bono business law assistance to nonprofit organizations working with low-income communities in Northern California. This project is perfect for experienced transactional attorneys, or new attorneys supervised by their firm. We especially need attorneys experienced in employment, real estate, intellectual property, taxation, liability and insurance, corporate formation/governance, business contracts, and finance.

To learn more about cases that are currently available, please contact CORP's Supervising Attorney, Gloria Chun, at 415.782.9000 x8970.

If you are a transactional attorney and interested in getting involved with CORP, please email Zula Ganzorig at probono@sfbar.org.

The following are examples of cases that have been placed in CORP's Business Law practice area: http://www.probono.net/sf/nonprofit.

  1. Employment Law: An Oakland-based nonprofit organization that provides extensive treatment and recovery services to low-income women escaping drug addiction is requesting legal assistance. The organization is seeking a consultation with an employment attorney regarding the classication of its workers as employees or independent contractors. If appropriate, the organization also seeks advice on how to best conduct this transition.
  2. Real Estate Law: A legal services nonprofit that provides a wide range of legal services to low income individuals and families in the East Bay is seeking assistance from an experienced real estate attorney, to review several leases and to answer questions regarding ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) compliance. The organization owns the building where it is located and leases unused space to 4 other organizations and one attorney. nAll leases have been executed but the client would like them reviewed to better understand its rights and obligations under the lease agreements and whether they've been properly executed. There is also a standard lease agreement that the organization would like to use in the future, review and advice on its sufficiency is needed. The client has general questions regarding ADA compliance. For conflict purposes the following is a list of the tenants in the building: California Indian Legal Services, World Institute for Disability, Better Business Bureau, Sentinel Fair Housing, and Law Offices of Thomas Finke.
  3. General Corporate Law: A San Francisco organization that provides surgical and specialty medical services to uninsured individuals through a public/private partnership with hospitals, clinics, and doctors is seeking to revise a small section of their bylaws, and are seeking a corporate attorney to help draft the changes.
  4. General Corporate Law: An organization that provides a wide variety of services to homeless people in the East Bay is looking for an attorney to help them review and revise both their bylaws and their articles of incorporation, in order to bring them up to date and to better match the current activities of the organization. They would like to complete this project in the next month.
  5. Real Estate Law: A nonprofit psychotherapy and counseling center that has been providing low-cost services to low-income individuals in San Francisco since 1970 is seeking assistance from an experienced real estate attorney. In April 1999 the organization signed a three-year extension on their lease, at a much higher rent. The organization is now under tremendous budgetary pressure, and for budgetary reasons they need to explore leasing alternatives. If unable to renegotiate their current lease the organization may be forced to close down by the end of the year. The organization is seeking an experienced real estate attorney to review their lease, give them a consultation regarding their legal options, and if appropriate to negotiate with their current landlord.

Through the Justice & Diversity Center (JDC), all volunteers receive:

  • Free MCLE accredited training: JDC offers MCLE-accredited trainings in almost all of its pro bono projects areas. The trainings are free in return for a commitment to providing pro bono assistance to at least two clients in need in the next 12 months. Trainings offer an opportunity to learn a new area of law and develop new areas of expertise.
  • Mentoring opportunities: Staff and highly experienced volunteers are available to act as mentors to volunteers while they are working with a client.
  • Access to all probono.net resources in the Business Law practice area http://www.probono.net/sf/nonprofit, including comprehensive training manuals.

What is JDC?
The Justice & Diversity Center (JDC) isa nonprofit program of The Bar Association of San Francisco, created to provide pro bono legal and related social services to low-income San Francisco families and individuals.