Legal Services Division

Who We Are

The mission of the American Bar Association Legal Services Division is to actively promote access to justice by ensuring the quality and accessibility of necessary legal services for those in need through the work of its entities’ programs, initiatives, and policy-making. The Division also achieves its mission by supporting civil legal aid, public defense, and military attorneys in their practices and professional development, along with the institutions and organizations that work to ensure access to justice for all.
The Legal Services Division houses the Standing Committee on Legal Aid and Indigent Defense (SCLAID), which works on matters relating to legal aid and defender services, and supports state-based Access to Justice Commissions through its Resource Center for ATJ Initiatives. The Division is also the home of the ABA Military and Veterans Legal Center, where the Standing Committee on Legal Assistance for Military Personnel (LAMP), Standing Committee on Armed Forces Law (SCAFL), and the Coordinating Committee on Veterans Benefits and Services are staffed and managed, along with these entities’ pro bono legal service programs serving military families and veterans.

Learn More – About Us

Read the rest

National legal services group achieves B-Corp status

Ampa Holdings LLP has become the largest legal and professional services group to be named a certified B-Corporation.

Organizations with certified B-Corporation status are legally required to consider the impact of business decisions on their people, customers, suppliers, communities and the environment, ensuring a balance between purpose, people and profit.

The group does not provide legal services directly, instead it provides the infrastructure and backing to enable the growth of its brands including Shakespeare Martineau, Lime Solicitors, Marrons, Mayo Wynne Baxter, CSS Assure and Corclaim. It employs more than 1,300 people over 18 hubs across the UK, including London.

Helen Hay, group head of culture and sustainability at Ampa, said: “We’re really proud to have achieved our highest score for how we treat our people, including our approach to pay and reward, our wellbeing initiatives and benefits and embedding professional development support and opportunities across the group of brands.”

In 2022 the group increased racial diversity at an equity stakeholder level by more than 3 per cent, against a target of 2 per cent, supported more than 400 young people through a variety of career development events, and significantly reduced its use of paper.

Sarah Walker-Smith, CEO of Ampa and Shakespeare Martineau, commented: “We believe you can be both purposeful and profitable, so our B-Corporation values ​​are embedded within our commercial growth strategy and fully supported from the top-down. We also take great pride in helping our clients achieve their sustainability goals.”

Looking to promote your product/service to SME businesses in your region?

Find out how Bdaily can help →

Read the rest

Woodruff, student legal services, shares priorities at ASMSU meeting

The Associated Students of MSU, or ASMSU, hosted Interim President Teresa Woodruff at its first meeting of the semester.

Her main goal was to convey to the student body that she supports them. She emphasized she hears the students and wants to ensure that the university is as safe and welcoming as it can possibly b.

She spoke on different initiatives that she has been paying attention to in fields such as diversity, equity and inclusion, and relationship violence and sexual misconduct. She said the university would be breaking ground on a new freestanding cultural center on campus.

After her presentation, two attorneys from Student Legal Services shared about the services they offered. Their priority is helping students on campus with legal needs completely free of cost. Their services also as educate students about their own legal issues so they have the skills needed to handle situations on their own own.

“Prior to engaging in our service, almost 80% of students reported moderate,” attorney Brian Jeffries said. “Afterwards 99% of those respondents said they’d better understand their legality issue.”

Student Legal Services can be found in the Student Services Building on the third floor.

Support student media!
Please consider donating to The State News and helping fund the future of journalism.


Share and discuss “Woodruff, student legal services share priorities at ASMSU meeting” on social media.

Read the rest

Legal Aid Ontario increases investment in Indigenous legal services

“For years, ALS has amass expertise in criminal law and how the law impacts our people, families and communities. Expanding ALS’ services into criminal and child protection will enable us to use our own complementary services to convert and support Indigenous people in Toronto. When needed, it will allow us to represent them from a place of Indigenous knowledge and perspective,” services-sign-new-service-agreement/”ALS legal advocacy director, Christa Big Canoe, said.

LAO said the new service agreement had renewed LAO and ALS’ commitment to delivering legal aid services that are trauma-informed, culturally safe, and culturally relevant to the Indigenous community.

David Field, LAO president and CEO, and Rod Strain, vice president of clinic law services, commented, “LAO is looking forward to the positive impact of this new service agreement, which represents both a stronger partnership between ALS and LAO and a deeper investment in improved justice outcomes for vulnerable Indigenous people.

“This agreement embodies our values ​​of inclusion, accountability, and access to justice, and these values ​​will continue to inform our open dialogue with ALS.”

LAO also provides funding to 72 independent legal clinics and seven student legal services organizations throughout the province.

Read the rest

Inside Student Legal Services: a free resource for MSU students

Founded on the third floor of the Student Services Building, Student Legal Services is a resource built to protect students in a legal capacity free of charge.

Associative attorney David Myers said the service can handle situation as minimum as $100 or as high as over $10,000.

“The appreciation from the students is always great,” Myers said. “And it’s nice to not have to send them a bill after they’re done with the service.”

Currently, two attorneys and paralegal assistants work with the service. Students from MSU’s law program also shadow these employees.

Attorney Brian Jefferies said Student Legal Services is trying to restore back to where it was before COVID-19 hit. For example, client interviews are back to an in-person settings.

“I think that makes a significant difference in terms of the experience that our clients have and our ability to really address some of their questions and provide help,” Jefferies said.

ASMSU vice president of finance and operations Vipul Adusumili said Student Legal Services is a resource built by students for students.

“One really cool unique thing is like the students are paying for the service like we’re all paying (ASMSU) tax and I think it’s really important,” Adusumili said. “Utilize this and (be) aware of it,” Adusummili said.

The attorneys at Student Legal Services can deal with matters like landlord and tenant issues, parking matters and finance decisions.

“Just to be frank, there’s a lot of students that are getting taken advantage of and that’s one of the areas that we’re focused on focusing on trying to at least assist those that come to us but hopefully trying to fix the problem, too ,” Myers said.

Jefferies said students could utilize the service to just ask for

Read the rest

Premier of Tasmania – Strategy released to assist Tasmanians in need with free or low-cost legal services

1 July 2022

Elise Archer, Attorney-General

The Tasmanian Legal Assistance Strategy 2022-2025 has been released today and will provide a strategic framework for the legal assistance sector across the areas of policy development, service funding and sector planning.

Quotes attributable to Attorney-General Elise Archer:

“The Tasmanian Liberal Government is a strong supporter of the legal assistance sector in Tasmania that provides free or low-cost legal services for Tasmanians in need.

“We want to ensure the sector is as efficient as possible in helping Tasmanians in need, which is why we have developed the Tasmanian Legal Assistance Strategy 2022-2025.

“The Strategy is our Government’s first strategic plan for legal assistance services, and has been prepared in consultation with the sector.

“The Strategy will be supported by an Action Plan, to be released in September 2022, which is currently being developed in consultation with the sector.

“I thank and acknowledge the legal assistance sector and those who contributed to the development of the Strategy, and look forward to continuing to work with the sector, to ensure efficient and appropriate legal assistance services are available for vulnerable Tasmanians.”

Quotes attributeable to Commonwealth Attorney-General, the Hon Mark Dreyfus QC MP:
“Legal assistance services play a vital role in helping the most disadvantaged Australians have access to justice.

“This strategy will help provide this assistance to the people who need it most and the Commonwealth looks forward to working with the states and territories on these issues to assist those in greatest need.”

Over the next three years, the Strategy focuses on four priority areas to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of legal assistance funding. These are:

  • Collect data on legal need;
  • Build capability in the legal assistance sector;
  • Enhance collaboration;
  • Support priority populations.


Read the rest