Looking for Pro Bono Opportunities? Volunteer with the WA Vets Wills Clinic on October 24th!

Pro Bono Opportunity Eligible for Pro Bono Honors: Washington Vets Wills Clinic on Saturday, October 24

WA Vets Wills Clinic Logo

The Washington Vets Wills Clinic (“Clinic”) has been providing pro bono legal advice and free estate planning documents to eligible Veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces, National Guard and Reserve members, and their spouses for three years.  Founded in 2012, the Clinic is a coalition of philanthropic, educational, civic, and veterans’ service organizations dedicated to giving back to former members of the military. The Clinic assists Veterans while providing pro bono opportunities to the legal community and experiential learning through service to law students.

The second annual North Sound Clinic will be hosted in Seattle on 24 October 2015, at the University of Washington School of Law.  The Clinic’s goal is to ensure that every attending Veteran and spouse meets with a lawyer and leaves the Clinic with an executed and notarized will, power of attorney, and health care directive.

To participate in the Clinic, Veterans apply online and the information requested in the application is used to create unique estate planning documents for each Veteran client. Not all that apply are accepted, and the Clinic reserves the right to determine rules of use and participation.  Once the Veteran and spouse are accepted, Clinic staff assigns them an appointment time.  On the day of the Clinic, Veterans check in, enjoy refreshments, and visit with the clinic partners and other veterans until their appointment time.

At their appointment time, the assigned law clerk greets the Veteran and their spouse, and accompanies them to a room where they meet in confidence with an assigned lawyer.  The lawyer interviews, counsels, and advises the clients while the law clerks draft any changes to the packet of pre-filled estate planning documents.  The lawyer reviews these with the clients and, once final copies are printed, guides them through execution of the documents.  Volunteer notaries public assist with formally executing the documents.  Finally, the law clerk escorts the clients back to the lobby.

A free Continuing Legal Education training class precedes each Clinic event, to teach lawyers and supporting volunteers the estate planning process, and to acquaint them with the basic documents used at the Clinic.

As one second-year law student volunteer observed, “As I saw the Vets leave after their sessions, they left holding hands with their spouses, smiling and thanking volunteers.  It was apparent that the services we provided had both legal and emotional benefits for the clients.”  Those legal and emotional benefits extend to the students, who find it very gratifying to serve the Veterans population, while learning about estate planning from practicing attorneys.

Law students can volunteer in two ways. The first is to volunteer for the day of the clinic, for a morning shift, afternoon shift, or all day (both) shift. The day of shifts will involve a combination of observing attorneys advising veteran clients, as well as general all-around and administrative tasks. The Clinic will work diligently to provide a combination of exposure to legal work as well as general purpose work. The second way to volunteer is for making confirmation calls to the veteran clients of their appointments, which will occur on Sat Oct 17th. This option allows for an hour or two of service, though the confirmations are more administrative than legal work. Please volunteer through the online form at www.wavetswillclinic.com/volunteer and use the comments box to indicate what volunteer opportunity you are interested in.

ABA Announces Mini-Grants for Projects Expanding Pro Bono Attorneys Representation of Unaccompanied Minor Immigrants

ABA Logo

ABA Working Group on Unaccompanied Minor Immigrants is pleased to announce the availability of mini-grants to legal assistance providers engaging pro bono attorneys to represent unaccompanied minor immigrants. The mini-grants are intended to provide initial financial support for innovative and sustainable pro bono models of legal representation of unaccompanied minor immigrants.

Applications are due no later than September 30, 2015. Please click here to view and download the Request for Proposals and Grant Application.

Questions regarding the mini-grants should be directed to Juliet Gilbert.

Equal Justice Works Career Fair & Conference – Last week for interview applications!

EJW Logo

The Equal Justice Works annual Conference and Career Fair is the largest national public interest legal career fair in the country.  More than 1,200 students from 165 law schools attend for two days of interviews, workshops, networking and other career opportunities.  More than 140 public interest employers conduct interviews for internship and full-time positions and meet with students in informal “table talk” settings to discuss public interest legal opportunities.  The Conference and Career Fair also features workshops on various public interest careers and job search advice, resume and cover letter review, mock interviews, and more. Students and recent graduates can apply for interviews through September 14 and may register to attend informal table talk networking and workshop sessions through October 9. UW Law students who’ve secured interviews may be eligible for limited funding associated with travel costs to DC. Please email Aline Carton-Listfjeld at acarton@uw.edu for more details.

For more information, visit the Equal Justice Works website.

King County’s First Equity & Social Justice Strategic Plan: We Want to Hear from Local Organizations!

King County Equity & Social Justice

King County is in the early stages of developing an actionable, countywide strategic plan to advance Equity and Social Justice in our region.  We need your input to ensure the plan is informed and grounded in the true needs and opportunities within communities, as well as how the county can act as a responsive and effective partner. 

We are asking organizations in all sectors to please go to our survey to share your ideas on how to increase equity in King County.  Let us know what issues we should collectively tackle, what’s working to increase equity, and what are emerging opportunities. We also want your ideas about how we can collectively partner to advance equity in our region.

We will continue to stay in touch about this process as we collectively shape priorities and strategies.