Category Archives: Pro Bono

News Article: Too Broke To Go Bankrupt? Harvard Student Uses Software To Tackle Problem For Poor

News Article: Daniel Fisher, Too Broke To Go Bankrupt? Harvard Student Uses Software To Tackle Problem For Poor, Forbes (Mar. 2, 2017).

 

News Article: Trump’s first budget would end program to help low-income Americans get lawyers

News Article: Alan Pyke, Trump’s first budget would end program to help low-income Americans get lawyers, Think Progress (Feb. 20, 2017).

New Article: “Is Pro Bono Practice in Legal “Backwaters” Beyond the Scope of the Model Rules?”

New Article: Barbara Graves-Poller, Is Pro Bono Practice in Legal “Backwaters” Beyond the Scope of the Model Rules?, 13 U.N.H. L. Rev. 1 (2015).

In honor of National Online Pro Bono Conversation: older article on Pro Bono

In honor of National Online Pro Bono Conversation, I am linking to an older article if you haven’t already read it: Martha F. Davis, Access and Justice: The Transformative Potential of Pro Bono Work, 73 Fordham L. Rev. 903 (2004).

National Pro Bono Celebration Week

It is National Pro Bono Celebration Week so I thought I would write about law school pro bono pledges and student volunteering.  The AALS has published: “Handbook on Law School Pro Bono Programs” (June 2001), but I am not aware of studies that compare pro bono hours pre vs. post pro bono pledge programs.
Getting students to do volunteer work as part of a law school class can add a lot to the classroom discussions as students have experiences they can share with their peers (though when you are getting course credit, the label “pro bono” may be questionable).  Nevertheless, it seems that professors can play an important role getting students to volunteer.  One problem I ran into — or rather my wife ran into — was that some schools (hers was a non-law school) require students volunteer as part of their degree programs for course credit but then, and this is the issue, charge the students as if they were actually taking a class.  Since at most such volunteer activity involves a slight administrative procedure for the school’s registrar, it seems unfair and even wrong to add to student debt or charges the full cost of a regular class.  (My wife was covered by a spousal tuition remission program, but other students are not so lucky.)
If we think getting students to volunteer and developing in them a “pro bono” habit is a good thing, it would be great if schools removed as many financial and structural barriers as they can.
-Thanks to Kate Bladow at technola blog (http://www.techno.la) for the heads up about this week.  Check out technola blog for more pro bono posts.

New Articles on Pro Bono

Fordham Law Review has published a symposium on “The Economic Downturn and the Legal Profession.”  Many of the articles are of interest, but below are two in particular of note for this blog:

LARGE LAW FIRMS AND THE PUBLIC INTEREST:  PROVISION OF PRO BONO SERVICES BY LARGE LAW FIRMS

MANAGING PRO BONO:  DOING WELL BY DOING BETTER
Scott L. Cummings & Deborah L. Rhode

THE PARADOXES OF PRO BONO
Richard Abel