Legal Assistance Of Western New York Receives $314,068 Pro Bono Innovation Fund Grant

Wednesday, September 10, 2014 - 10:52

The Legal Services Corporation (LSC) announced today that Legal Assistance of Western New York, Inc. (LawNY) will receive an 18-month $314,068 Pro Bono Innovation grant to deliver free legal follow-up services to low-income clients.

To create the project, LawNY is partnering with five other LSC grantees in the state: Legal Aid Society of Mid-New York, Legal Aid Society of Northeastern New York, Legal Services of the Hudson Valley, Nassau/Suffolk Law Services Committee, and Neighborhood Legal Services of Buffalo.

New York’s Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman recently established two major pro bono initiatives: one requiring 50 hours of pro bono for applicants admitted to the New York State Bar on or after January 1, 2015, and another establishing the Attorney Emeritus Program to encourage experienced attorneys to offer their skills to legal aid providers.

In response to those pro bono initiatives, the six LSC grantees will create a new pro bono practice group across organizations to coordinate pro bono opportunities among their 33 offices and nine New York law schools, including the Feerick Center for Social Justice at Fordham University School of Law, which staffs the Attorney Emeritus Program for the Office of Court Administration.

Through the partnership created by the six LSC grantees – which provide legal services to every urban, suburban and rural community outside of New York City – thousands of hours will be donated to help low-income New Yorkers resolve civil legal problems in areas affecting the essentials of life: housing, family matters, subsistence income, and access to health care and education.

LawNY is one of 11 inaugural recipients of LSC’s $2.5 million Pro Bono Innovation Fund, a competitive grant that invests in projects that identify and promote replicable innovations in pro bono for low-income legal aid clients.