The Legal Services Corporation (LSC), is the single largest provider of civil legal aid in the nation, distributing 95% of its federal appropriation to 135 legal aid programs, with over 900 offices, nationwide; at least one LSC grantee is present in each of the fifty states. LSC grantees provide direct services to approximately one million constituents who struggle to get by on incomes below or near the poverty line.
Those benefiting from LSC-funded programs are among the most vulnerable Americans, including veterans returning from combat, domestic violence victims, those coping with the after-effects of natural disasters, families involved in child custody disputes, people with disabilities, and individuals undergoing foreclosures or other housing issues. Due to economic conditions, the number of people who qualify for legal services is at an all-time high; over 61 million Americans now are eligible for civil legal assistance.
Currently, LSC is funded at $341 million, a significant reduction from the FY11 level of $404.2 million. Now that Congress has passed a budget agreement, the ABA will continue to advocate for high legal services funding. By January 15, 2014, LSC should know is appropriation for the rest of FY 2014.