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Be the ONE – Message to Paralegals

Be the ONE – Message to Paralegals

Kathy Para, an attorney for Jackonsville Area Legal Aid in Jacksonville, Florida and the Jacksonville Bar Association’s Pro Bono Committee Chair, is looking for legal professionals to be “The One” to help make a difference, even if it’s in a single pro bono case:

At the annual Florida Bar Convention in Boca Raton this past week, attorneys from around the State were asked to be “The One” to give something back to their communities with pro bono legal services. They were asked to imagine the impact attorneys could make if every attorney took just one pro bono case. That single contribution could drastically reduce the enormous backlog of pro bono cases and significantly improve access to justice for all Florida residents.

Para’s call for action in Florida lists several legal organizations that need help from both lawyers and paralegals, including the Guardian ad Litem program and The Missing Link of Jacksonville, which helps victims of domestic violence prepare pro se divorce documents. (The Northeast Florida Paralegal Association, Inc. has been involved with Missing Link for several years.)

There are pro bono opportunities in every state. With our special training and knowledge of the legal system, paralegals, legal assistants and other legal support staffers have a great deal to offer in this area, whether it’s helping the organization directly, or working with our employers on pro bono cases.

It is an incredible feeling to make a difference in the life of a person who could not otherwise afford representation in the legal system. Volunteering your time will make a difference in your life, too. The years I spent as a Guardian ad Litem changed the way I see the world forever, and may have contributed to a decision I made years after I submitted the report in my last case: to adopt a child from the foster care system.

Do you need some ideas for volunteer opportunities in your area? Check out these sites, as well as your local and state bar associations:

The American Bar Association also has a terrific online resource, “How to Utilize Legal Assistants in Pro Bono Publico Programs.”
Source: Jacksonville Daily Record

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Contact Info:

Lynne J. DeVenny, N.C. State Bar Certified Paralegal

Owner & Virtual Paralegal, DeVenny Paralegal Services

Email: lynne.devenny[at]gmail.com

Telephone: 336-582-0003

Inquiries are welcome, with free quotes available.

Meet Lynne:

Lynne DeVenny is a North Carolina State Bar Certified Paralegal with over 27 years of experience working on complex litigation cases, including medical malpractice, personal injury, workers’ compensation, and Social Security disability.

Disclosure: I am not a lawyer and cannot provide legal representation or legal advice.

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