Current Pro Bono Opportunities

We are currently seeking volunteers for the following Pro Bono Cases.  Please check back regularly, as our pro bono opportunities often change.  

Assist low-wage workers who asserted their rights to gain lawful status

Case Type: U Visa
Assignment: Prepare and file U Visa Application
LAF currently represents 50 workers who were fired when they attempted to unionize. They filed a petition for representation with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) in November 2016. Aware of the union activity, the company, which had previously requested that workers re-verify their status and ability to work, advanced the reverification date to a date prior to the schedule union vote. When workers did not re-verify (most did not have status to be working and feared being reported to Immigrations and Customs Enforcement), the company fired them. Though they did vote on November 18, the company challenged their votes as illegal because they were no longer employees of the company. The union then filed an unfair labor practice with the NLRB. The case remains pending.
Many workers were employed at the company for years and they and their families have been significantly harmed by the abrupt firing. Some were single mothers raising young children. Nearly all of the clients are Spanish speaking only. The U visa application may be the only redress they have for this illegal activity.
Experience Needed: None
Timeline: All documents must be prepared by September 1, 2017.
Time Commitment: We anticipate 20-30 hours to prepare and file the U Visa application.
Supervision: Volunteers must attend one U visa training session: either on Thursday, July 6 or on Wednesday, July 12, from 5:00-7:00 p.m.  Both sessions will be held at LAF. Attorneys who have already filed a U visa will not have to attend the training, but will be required to participate in a conference call (to be scheduled) for a briefing on preparing and filing a labor-based U visa application, particularly the issue of substantial abuse.  We will announce the date for this call later.
Location: Pro bono attorney's office and LAF's office.

Help client collect money owed to her by former employer
Case Type: Collection
Assignment: Collect pro se judgement that the client obtained
Facts: The client made a mistake in preparing their 2015 tax return and listed her former employer’s bank routing number where the tax form requests the account into which the refund should be paid. The IRS paid it into that account and will not help the client retrieve the funds. The client filed their own complaint against the former employer and was awarded the full amount wrongfully paid.
Experience Needed: Know or be willing to research how to collect on a judgment, as this is not an area in which LAF is particularly knowledgable.
Timeline: Begin collections proceedings in courtroom 1401.  For other reasons, the client needs to pay the money back to the IRS although no time line is in place.
Time Commitment: Unsure. Potentially 10-20 hours over a few months' time.
Supervision: LAF can provide some support but request the pro bono attorney to take the lead.
Location: Daley Center

Help a woman with two children obtain a divorce and financial support
Case Type: Divorce
Assignment: File and litigate petition for dissolution of marriage
Facts: The client has two teenage children with her husband. The husband has a pension. The client has no retirement. The husband recently moved out of state.
Experience Needed: None
Timeline: No impending due dates. Begin divorce as soon as possible.
Time Commitment: Extended representation.
Supervision: LAF can co-counsel.
Location: Daley Center

Help client get a fresh start through divorce from abusive husband
Case Type: Divorce
Assignment: File and litigate petition for dissolution of marriage
Facts: The client and her husband have been married for over 30 years. After decades of abuse, in 2013, she finally decided to call the police after he fractured her nose and broke several bones in face. He was arrested and sentenced to 7 years for domestic battery, but appealed his conviction and is being granted a new trial. He’s back in jail for violating the order of protection. There are some small financial issues but they should not be complex.Timeline: No impending due dates. Begin divorce as soon as possible.
Experience Needed: Divorce experience preferred but not necessary.
Timeline: File initial divorce pleadings as soon as possible.
Time Commitment: Ongoing representation for 6 months to 2 years
Supervision: LAF staff attorney can give an initial overview and let the pro bono attorney take over, but the staff attorney can work collaboratively and supervise throughout if necessary.
Location: Daley Center

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