Pro Bono Law
Pro Bono, is Latin for "for the [public] good." In the legal world, the term usually applies to the provision of legal services free of charge to those who could not otherwise afford attorney fees. Over the years, and especially during the last several decades, pro bono legal service has gained in popularity and expanded beyond the more traditional areas of public interest law.
Once considered charity work, many states have imposed ethical requirements on attorneys requiring a certain amount of pro bono work each year. For this reason, attorneys are now responsible for providing more public service and charity than virtually any other profession in America. In fact, dollar for dollar, attorneys donate more to charitable works than many tax-supported charitable organizations!
Despite the requirements for annual pro bono work, and the great benefits this has conferred to indigent clients, it is not without its problems. Confusion over the limits of responsibility to non-paying clients, potential conflicts of interests, and concerns over diminished quality of work for pro bono clients are but a few of the challenges facing pro bono lawyering in America.
The resources below will provide more information on pro bono legal services, the legal and ethical requirements, and information about how you may be able to find an attorney in your area who can assist you with your case on a pro bono basis.