Standing Committee on the Delivery of Legal Services

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About the Standing Committee The ABA Standing Committee on the Delivery of Legal Services has the mandate to improve access to lawyers and legal services for those of moderate incomes – those who do not qualify for legal aid yet lack the resources for full legal representation.

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Announcements

               

                LATEST DEVELOPMENTS  

          


LACBA Lawyer Referral Service Expands Limited Scope Representation Services

The Los Angeles County Bar Association (LACBA) Lawyer Referral Service has launched a limited scope representation initiative to connect interested panel members with clients of limited means who may benefit from limited scope services.

Proposed Expansion of Unbundling Rules in Arkansas

The Arkansas Supreme Court is considering proposed changes to its Rules of Professional Conduct that would provide additional guidance for attorneys wishing to provide limited scope representation. Recently, an order soliciting comments was issued in response to a petition that the Arkansas Bar Association filed, requesting the changes. 

New Pricing Toolkit for Attorneys

The Chicago Bar Foundation and its incubator, the Justice Entrepreneurs Project (JEP), have released the Pricing Toolkit for attorneys seeking to serve low- and moderate-income clients. The Toolkit is designed to help attorneys value, price, and provide their services in ways that are affordable and accessible to folks who fall into the Justice Gap.


Call for Justice Broadens Pipeline to Legal Services

2015 Brown Award winner, Call for Justice LLC, is holding its Legal Liaison Program on March 29. C4J collaborates with United Way 211, the state’s largest information and referral resource, to provide training on how to make better, more targeted legal referrals to available programs. At the event, leaders from community groups and organizations will be trained on where to find legal resources. 

Court Program Offering Unbundling Made Permanent in NY

The New York City Bar Association has just made permanent its Federal Pro Se Legal Assistance Project, which was launched a year ago in the Eastern District as a pilot program. The program provides limited-scope representation, advice and consultation to pro se litigants.

Proposed Resolution - Links to Lawyers

The Delivery Committee has drafted a proposed resolution calling upon entities that provide online legal documents to include clear and conspicuous links to lawyers. The Committee anticipates bringing the resolution to the ABA House of Delegates at the 2016 Annual Meeting. Click here to access the proposed resolution and the accompanying report. Contact will.hornsby@americanbar.org to share your support, questions or concerns.

National Database for Professionals Assisting Self-Represented Litigants

The National Self-Represented Litigants Project has just launched a National Database of Professionals Assisting Self-Represented Litigants to connect those offering innovative and responsive services and to provide information to self-represented litigants looking for affordable services. Read more about it and the issues surrounding it in the article, Reasonable Doubt: Why Better Access to Justice is Every Canadian’s Issue.

2015 Year in Review

The Year in Review chronicles the work of the Delivery Committee and others who share a commitment to advancing access for those of moderate income. It highlights relevant articles, initiatives, policy, models and more from 2015. The annual Report is designed to help stakeholders broaden their understanding of the issues, identify others who are working in parallel paths and facilitate conversations about increased avenues of access to legal services. Access previous Year in Review reports here

Luz Herrera Featured in Profile Piece Article
The magazine CounterPunch has run a profile piece on former Delivery Committee member, UCLA law professor and "social justice lawyer" Luz Herrera. The inspirational article, "From Tijuana to Harvard to Compton to UCLA Law: the Journey of Social Justice Lawyer Luz Herrera," is available here

The Future Is Now: Innovative Client-Centric Strategies for Building Your Legal Practice Today

From the Chicago Bar Association Young Lawyers Section & The Chicago Bar Foundation, this interactive seminar will take place Friday, April 15, 2016 and will provide practical, innovative strategies for engaging and retaining more clients through more choice and flexibility in ways that resonate with client expectations. Learn more and register here

Call for Comments from CA Futures Commission

The Commission on the Future of California’s Court System is seeking comments on proposed concepts it will explore during its Feb. 8-9 public comment session in San Francisco. Members of the public can request to speak at the comment session or submit written comments either before or after the session. 

Advancing Unbundling

Staff Counsel to the Delivery Committee, Will Hornsby, discusses the broadening support of unbundling and the various ways bar associations can advance it in the ABA Bar Leader article, "Unbundling: The bridge between going it alone and full representation."

Bonnie Hough Recognized for Innovation

Former Delivery Committee member, Bonnie Hough, has been named one of The Recorder's 2015 Innovator Awards Serial Innovators. Learn more about the Awards here and about Bonnie's work at the California Administrative Office of the Courts here

New ABA Ethics Opinion on Unbundling

The ABA has released an ethics opinion addressing the obligations of a lawyer when communicating with a person who is receiving limited-scope representation. The opinion recommends that attorneys ask pro se litigants whether they are being represented by counsel to avoid violating the “no-contact” rule. Read Formal Ethics Opinion 472 here

Vermont Futures Commission Final Report and Recommendations

The Vermont Joint Commission on the Future of Legal Services recently released a report in which it recommends, among others, incentives for lawyers to practice in rural areas, assisting lawyers with technology and creating models of unbundling and creative fee structures.  


Preliminary Results of Self-Represented Litigants Study

The Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System (IAALS) has shared some preliminary results of their qualitative study, “Cases Without Counsel: New Project to Explore Experiences of Self-Representation in U.S. Family Court." The final analysis will be released in early 2016.

New Research Shows Benefits of Unbundling

Last year the Legal Services Board and Legal Services Consumer Panel conducted a qualitative study looking at the unbundling experience from the perspective of consumer, provider and judge. The report is now available from the LSCP here and the LSB here.

Judge Allen Webster Jr. to Receive 2015 ABA Difference Maker Award 

The award "honors an attorney living or deceased who made a significant contribution to the legal profession through service to the profession" and will be presented to the former Delivery Committee member at the GPSolo 2015 Solo & Small Firm Summit in September. 

Nebraska Bar Brings Lawyers to Rural Counties

The Grand Island Independent discusses the short supply of lawyers in some rural areas and what the Nebraska State Bar Association is doing about it in their state to increase access to legal representation. 

Call for Comments on Ghostwriting
The Rhode Island Supreme Court has invited comments on the subject of its recent decision in which it held that an attorney may provide limited scope representation, but may not ghostwrite pleadings, motions or other written submissions for a pro se litigant unless the attorney signs the document and discloses his or her identity and the extent of the assistance. Comments should be submitted to the Clerk of the Supreme Court by January 15, 2016. Read more here

National Summit on Innovation in Legal Services

Videos of several presentations from the National Summit on Innovation in Legal Services are now available here. The Summit, held in early May, was co-sponsored by the ABA Presidential Commission on the Future of Legal Services and Stanford University School of Law. See the related ABA Journal article here

Report from Ohio Task Force on Access to Justice

A recently issued report from the Ohio Supreme Court Task Force on Access to Justice advocates for self-help centers and unbundled legal services, as well as recommends requiring that an "Access to Justice Impact Statement" accompany rule changes. Read the March 2015 Report here

Maryland Expands Unbundling

The Maryland Court of Appeals has amended its Rules of Procedure and Lawyers’ Rules of Professional Conduct, implementing recommendations by the Maryland Access to Justice Commission to expand limited scope representation in the state. See the recent Rules Order here.  

Canadian Bar Association Creates Legal Health Checks
The CBA’s Access to Justice Committee has developed a series of “legal health checks” to help the general public proactively assess their legal health and identify legal problems early on. You can find all 12 “cards,” available on a variety of issues, on the CBA’s Equal Justice website.

2015 James I. Keane Memorial Award

The ABA Law Practice Division eLawyering Task Force has selected the law firm of Houghton Vandenack Williams in Omaha, Nebraska as the recipient of the 2015 James I. Keane Memorial Award for excellence in eLawyering. The award will be presented during the ABA Techshow on April 16th.

Addressing the Rural Lawyer Gap

A recent Daily Report article discusses how Georgia is looking at Project Rural Practice in South Dakota as a guide to address their own shortage of rural lawyers, and how legislation has been introduced in Georgia to address the issue.

Unbundling Webinar Featured in ABA E-News

YOUR ABA, e-news for members, recently featured M. Sue Talia in a discussion about limited scope representation. The discussion included limitations, ethical considerations, and trends that led to its demand. It also highlighted the recent ABA webinar from the Delivery Committee on unbundling, also featuring Talia.   

In Their Own Words...A Video Featuring Incubator Lawyers  
"In Their Own Words" shows how lawyers from around the country share the benefits of incubator projects - highlighting opportunities for public service, the value of practice management training and mentor relations, and the advantages of camaraderie with one another. View the video or download the file here.



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