Lawyers Playing a Pro Bono Role in High-Profile Events
Lawyers are involved on a pro bono basis in two recently reported, high profile events. As my co-blogger Bob Ambrogi mentioned in this post yesterday, a West Texas court is moving forward with child custody hearings to determine the future of the 416 children removed last week by authorities from a polygamist sect's compound in West Texas. And lawyers from all over the Lone Star state are responding to a call by the Texas Bar for volunteers to represent the children as well as any parents who decide to fight for custody, reports the Associated Press.
Thus far, lawyers don't know who their clients are or when they'll have a chance to confer with them before the hearing. Nevertheless, as Dallas attorney Ken Fuller explained: "We're just going down there to make sure due process is followed."
Meanwhile, a few hundred miles north, up in Ohio, pro bono lawyers are playing a critical role in helping property owners in danger of foreclosure figure out their options, notes the New York Times. Ohio's chief justice recruited more than 1,000 lawyers to represent borrowers free of charge, and the state set up a hotline to direct borrowers to the lawyers.
The public delights in bashing lawyers, and indeed, sometimes there's good reason. But lawyers also deserve credit for situations like these, or post-9/11 or Katrina, when lawyers have stepped up to the plate and offered assistance at no charge. Why are lawyers' good deeds so quickly forgotten?
Posted by Carolyn Elefant on April 16, 2008 at 12:39 PM | Permalink
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