New York County Lawyers offers opportunities to our Members who want to serve the public interest. NYCLA Members can earn MCLE credits, acquire new skills, and help your community.
In order to participate in any of NYCLA’s Pro Bono programs, you must be a current NYCLA Member in good standing and be admitted to the New York State Bar. Some programs require additional qualifications; they are noted with each program.
If you are a law student or a law graduate who is not yet admitted to the bar, you still may be able to participate! Please contact Lois Davis, Director of Pro Bono Programs at 212 267 6646 ext. 217 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Legal Counseling Project - Provides counseling to individuals four times a month on an appointment-only basis in the areas of family, employment and landlord/tenant law. No representation of any kind is undertaken. Individuals are prepared during the clinics for pro se representation. Volunteer attorneys may be asked to review documents, answer questions, discuss areas of concern that the individual should be aware of when entering into certain agreements or point out various methods whereby the individual can either correct a problem or seek appropriate assistance and direction. Mentors, who are experienced in the four practice areas, are available by telephone on each clinic night to assist volunteers.
The following requirements must be met to participate in the Legal Counseling Project:
Manhattan CLARO (Civil Legal Advice and Resource Office) - The Civil Legal Advice and Resource Office (CLARO) is a free, weekly walk-in clinic that provides limited legal advice to pro se litigants with consumer debt matters in the New York Civil Courts. CLARO was created in response to the growing number of low-income individuals being sued in Civil Court by collection agencies. The volunteer attorneys at CLARO provide unrepresented litigants with information and resources to help them represent themselves effectively.
The following requirements must be met to participate in the Manhattan CLARO Project:
Project Restore - Provides assistance to individuals with misdemeanor and felony convictions who are denied vocational licenses by the New York Department of State. This unique program provides representation for applicants whose adjudicated criminal history predates the employment license application and is the basis for the denial.
The following requirements must be met to participate in Project Restore:
State Central Registry Project – Provides pro bono representation to individuals who seek to amend, seal or expunge indicated reports of abuse from the New York State Central Register of Child Abuse and Maltreatment.
The following requirements must be met to participate in the State Central Registry Project:
Unemployment Insurance Advocacy Project - This project, in collaboration with Volunteers of Legal Service (VOLS), recruits and trains volunteer attorneys to represent individuals denied unemployment insurance benefits in administrative hearings before the Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board. Volunteer attorneys interview clients, review documents, develop a case theory, conduct direct and cross-examinations, and make closing arguments before an administrative law judge.
The following requirements must be met to participate in the Unemployment Insurance Advocacy Project: