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2017 ABA Pro Bono Survey Results
In January your participation was requested in a statewide survey hosted by the American Bar Association to quantify and recognize the bro bono work done by attorneys, as well as to understand factors that encourage or discourage pro bono service. The survey was designed to better understand what types of improvements would motivate more lawyers to participate in providing pro bono services. The results of the survey are available below. On behalf of the Kansas Supreme Court Access to Justice Committee, the Kansas Bar Association and Kansas Legal Services, we thank you for your time and participation in taking the survey.
You can read a summary of the results written by Marilyn Harp, KLS Executive Director, below in the October 2017 issue of the Journal (starts on pg. 31).
Kansas Legal Services Pro Bono Program
The KLS Pro Bono Program provides service to low-income clients or children on an uncompensated basis. No potential client is given an attorney's name without specific approval from the attorney. All potential clients will be screened for financial eligibility through KLS. Many of the cases referred will be cases that KLS cannot accept due to conflicts or other barriers. Clients using this program understand that the attorney has agreed to provide services at no cost for the referred case only. Clients also understand that they may be required to pay filing fees, witness fees, etc. Acceptance of the case is with no expectation of payment for my time or office expenses. KLS may be able to help with extraordinary litigation expenses, when the interests of justice require it.
For more information visit the KLS Pro Bono Resources page.
Online Site Provides Free Answers to Civil Legal Questions – Attorney Volunteers Needed!
Many things that are simple for lawyers are baffling to those without legal training. In an effort to provide some guidance for lower income persons who need legal information or advice to help them understand their situation, Kansas is joining other states in a national effort to provide online answers to civil legal questions. There are no requirements on the number of volunteer hours you provide. Work will be done via computer and the client will not have your direct email address or phone number. Nothing from the client will come directly to you. You will be able to go online and select the questions you will answer, based on geography or legal matters involved.
Click the link below for additional information and to complete a form to indicate your interest. We will contact you soon with additional information. The program is led by the American Bar Association and you do not have to be an ABA or KBA member to volunteer.
Click Here to Volunteer
Legal Connection: Military Matters is a program of the Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Foundation
The program provides pro bono and low cost legal assistance for veterans and active duty military that don’t qualify for aid from other agencies. Those needing assistance are referred to Military Matters by the program’s community partners including the Kansas City VA, United Way of Kansas City, Legal Aid of Western Missouri and Kansas Legal Services. All potential clients are screened for eligibility such as verification of military status and income and are informed that pro bono or low cost assistance is provided for the referred case only. Military Matters may be able to assist with litigation expenses in certain situations.
KBA Members—Please Record Your Pro Bono Hours
Your KBA member profile is an excellent place to record pro bono hours. In an effort to learn more about the number of hours KBA members contribute each year, we have added a space for you to keep them updated. Under Professional Information when you edit your bio (Manage Profile > Edit Bio) you will find Pro Bono Hours 2018. Just enter the hours in the box. Thank you for your participation!
Elder Law Hotline
Join other Kansas attorneys in providing legal services to Kansans, age 60 and older. The Kansas Elder Law Hotline is a project of Kansas Legal Services Inc. There is no income eligibility for callers to participate in this program. Volunteers can expect to talk to clients of widely varying economic and social backgrounds. The Hotline provides Kansas senior citizens access to an attorney willing to advise them about legal issues and may also refer them to other resources for additional assistance. You might be referred cases that may not match your experience/expertise; however, we provide Internet resources to help you guide those callers. The Elder Law Hotline asks that attorneys volunteer a three and ½ hour block of time every other month. Calls will be transferred to your office, along with demographic information about each client.
KBA Jeans for Justice and My Ties and Trivia Night at the Bar
Would you like to host a casual day with proceeds benefiting Kansas Legal Services? Law firms, government agencies, Kansas businesses, and partner organizations can show their support by helping to promote Jeans for Justice and My Ties and Trivia Night at the Bar. Visit www.ksbar.org/JeansJusticeMyTies for more information.
Kansas Emeritus Attorney Program
Any attorney who currently has a status of inactive or retired on their license to practice law in Kansas can work with a not for profit provider of civil legal services on a pro bono basis. Kansas Legal Services is such an organization and has offices throughout the state. The "Questions-and-Answers About the Kansas Emeritus Attorney Program" will answer many of your questions.
Kansas Coalition Against Sexual and Domestic Violence’s Legal Assistance for Victims Project
The Kansas Coalition Against Sexual and Domestic Violence’s Legal Assistance for Victims Project is a grant-based pro bono referral program for victims of sexual and domestic violence. No cases are referred without specific approval from the attorney. All potential clients have been screened by advocates for victimization and by the LAV project attorney for appropriateness and income. Clients are informed about and understand the extent to which pro bono attorneys are able to provide services. In addition, attorneys are recruited to represent Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault programs to quash subpoenas to testify in ongoing litigation. Contact Jessica Nasternak, KCSDV Director of Legal and Policy Division, firstname.lastname@example.org
KBA Members Recognized for Pro Bono Work
- Vincent J. Garcia
Garcia Law Office, Wichita
Garcia is a lifelong resident of Wichita and graduate of Bishop Carroll High school 74’, his B.S. from Wichita State University 86’ and his J.D. from Oklahoma City University School of Law 90’. Vincent retired from the Wichita Police Department after 22 years of service prior to starting his law practice in 1999. Garcia Law Office is located in Wichita, Joseph his youngest son is also an attorney at the firm, his wife Laura is one of three paralegals that also serve as interpreters at the firm. The firm practices in many areas of the law but their primary focus is family and criminal law.
Madison M. Hatten
Shook Hardy & Bacon LLP, Kansas City, MO
Hatten defends multinational companies in complex product liability litigation, focusing on claims involving pharmaceuticals and medical devices. Madison has been a member of several teams defending clients in multi-district litigation, including a bellwether trial (Cardenas v. Boston Scientific Corp.) in the pelvic mesh litigation, one of the largest complex cases currently pending in the United States. Pro bono work is also important to Madison. She has assisted families with adoption proceedings by representing them at hearings, and has successfully defended juveniles in family court.
- Heather J. Schlozman
Dugan Schlozman LLC, Overland Park
Schlozman is a co-founder of Dugan Schlozman LLC where she represents both private sector and federal employees in all types of claims in all stages of litigation. She is a board member for the Kansas City Workers Justice Center and regularly staffs volunteer law clinics to assist indigent clients with wage theft claims. Heather is a passionate advocate for women’s rights, and is active with the Women’s Employment Network. A board member of the Association of Women Lawyers, Heather also serves as a volunteer legal advocate for the American Diabetes Association. The proud mother of two teenagers is also an avid distance runner.
Click here for more about the Pro Bono award and a listing of past recipients.