Helpful Organizations

Helpful Organizations

Free or Reduced Fee Legal Aid

1.

AIDS Legal Council of Chicago
180 North Michigan Avenue
Suite 2110 Chicago, IL 60601| View map
Phone: 312-427-8990
Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

The AIDS Legal Council of Chicago serves economically disadvantaged people in Cook County who: (1) are HIV+, living with AIDS, or perceived as such; (2) have legal claims that are HIV/AIDS-related; and (3) have annual household income under 300% of the federal poverty level.**

We offer counseling and direct services related to the following issues, when those issues are related to the individual's HIV status:

  • public benefits, including SSI, SSDI, TANF
  • Medicaid and Medicare 
  • employment discrimination
  • immigration
  • returning to work
  • confidentiality and testing violations
  • health care provider discrimination
  • health, life, and long-term disability insurance
  • guardianship, standby guardianship, adoption
  • housing discrimination
  • bankruptcy, debtor-creditor issues
  • wills and powers of attorney


** The income limits are flexible. Individuals with higher incomes may be represented if their economic circumstances and/or the complexity of their case, make it unlikely that they can afford private counsel. In addition, the Council represents individuals with higher income who are eligible under a special grant, for example, our Ryan White grants support services to medically indigent clients, regardless of income. There are no income limits for people with HIV whom we can advise with a brief telephone consultation.

View current federal poverty levels


2.

Center on Halsted Legal Program
3656 North Halsted Street Chicago, IL 60613| View map
Phone: 773-472-6469
TTY: 773-472-1277
Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

The Legal Program at  Center on Halsted provides members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) community with referrals to attorneys specializing in areas such as discrimination, adoption, custody, personal injury, criminal cases, harassment, contracts, wills, and bankruptcy. Referrals are made to attorneys who are sensitive to, and experienced in matters related to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer issues.

By appointment only, volunteer attorney's offer free, in person, legal consultations Wednesday evenings at Center on Halsted. This is a setting where LGBTQ people can come speak with a volunteer lawyer one-on-one about specific, immediate needs for specific situations and receive appropriate referrals. For more information about the Legal Program, or to make an appointment, please call 773.472.6469 X 436.

Other services provided at Center on Halsted include support groups for youth and seniors; psychotherapy services; a hotline for HIV and STD concerns; support related to domestic, sexual, and hate violence; LGBTQ cultural competence training for service providers and community organizations; and a range of life-enrichment programs.


3.

Midwest Center on Law & the Deaf
P.O. Box 804297 Chicago, IL 60680| View map
Phone: 800-894-3653
TTY: 800-894-3654
Languages: English, American Sign Language
Send email | View website

MCLD provides information to the general public on the rights of deaf and hard-of-hearing people, and helps deaf and hard of hearing people find attorneys willing to provide accessible legal services.  If you or a deaf or hard-of-hearing person you know needs a lawyer, please call MCLD to help you find one.


4.

Self Help Web Center
Richard J. Daley Center
50 West Washington
Room 602 Chicago, IL 60602| View map

Languages: English, Polish, Spanish
Send email

The Self Help Web Center provides free computer workstations at the Daley Center Courthouse where people who cannot find an attorney can access legal resources over the internet in many areas of law.  These internet resources include:

  • Online programs that create court forms
  • Legal information in 25 areas of law, including step-by-step guides, articles, and video trainings
  • A search tool for free and low-cost legal help


The Self-Help Web Center cannot give legal advice, but law students from Chicago-Kent College of Law help people find the information they need.  Hours are 8:30 am to 4:30 pm, Monday through Friday.


5.

Catholic Charities Legal Assistance
Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Chicago
651 W. Lake Street
Suite 403 Chicago, IL 60661| View map
Phone: 312-948-6821
Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

The mission of Catholic Charities Legal Assistance (CCLA) is to provide access to compassionate and competent legal assistance to the economically disadvantaged in the Chicago area. 


Services provided: CCLA provides legal advice over its Legal Advice Line and evaluates cases for direct representation in the areas of family law, consumer law, housing law, and immigration.  CCLA also provides Legal Educational Seminars,  Referrals to other Legal Aid Organizations, and Access to a Pro Bono Network for limited cases.

Our services are free to low-income clients. Clients who do not qualify for free services may be charged a $25 or $35 fee.

Spanish speaking staff available.

Intake Hours: Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.


6.

CARPLS

Phone: 312-738-9200
Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

CARPLS is an innovative legal aid service that offers an immediate response to the everyday legal problems confronting impoverished families throughout Cook County. Our legal aid hotline and court-based advice desks give low-income clients direct access to experienced attorneys who are trained to quickly assess and respond to a wide range of civil legal problems. CARPLS attorneys resolve over 85% of all cases in-house by providing information, advice and brief services including the preparation and review of legal documents. Clients with more complex needs are referred by CARPLS to a network of specialized legal and social service providers.


7.

LAF (Legal Assistance Foundation)
120 S. LaSalle St.
Suite 900 Chicago, IL 60603| View map
Phone: 312-341-1070
TTY: 312-431-1206
Toll-free: 800-824-4050
Languages: Chinese/Mandarin, English, Korean, Polish, Russian, Spanish
Send email | View website

LAF (formerly The Legal Assistance Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago) provides free civil legal services to individuals and families in Chicago and suburban Cook County who are unable to afford an attorney. Households with limited assets and income at or below 150 percent of the federal poverty line may qualify for free legal help. 

We have higher income limits for homeowners at risk of foreclosure, seniors, veterans, people living with HIV-AIDS, and domestic violence survivors seeking protection from an abuser.

In addition, a person must be a:

  • U.S. citizen
  • Lawful Permanent Resident
  • Asylee, Refugee, or a person who has been granted Withholding of Removal
  • An Adjustment of Status applicant who also has a U.S. citizen spouse, parent, or child (under 21)
  • A victim of human trafficking
  • A victim of domestic battery (including domestic violence), sexual assault, extreme mental cruelty, or a number of other crimes which are included in the U visa laws

We can provide limited services for

  • H2A (agriculture) or H2B (forestry) workers
  • Lawful temporary residents
  • Individuals seeking assistance under the Hague Convention (related to child abduction)

While we cannot provide legal assistance in all immigration cases, we can talk to you to find out what kind of help you might need, and refer somewhere where we think you can get that help.

View current federal poverty levels


8.

Kane Legal Clinic
1850 West Roosevelt Road Chicago, IL 60608| View map
Phone: 312-666-1331
Toll-free: 312-666-8874
Languages: English
Send email | View website

The Kane Legal Clinic operates out of the Chicago Lighthouse at 1850 West Roosevelt Road, Chicago IL 60608. We provide free legal services for people with vision impairments who cannot afford a lawyer. Please call 312-666-1331 and ask for Judge Pomaro. In most cases, you will need to come to the clinic, however when you speak to the clinic director by phone, that can be determined. Appointments are generally on Monday or Thursday, but you may leave a message with your problem at any time, and the judge will return your call by the next business day.


9.

Cabrini Green Legal Aid
740 N. Milwaukee Avenue Chicago, IL 60642| View map
Phone: 312-738-2452
Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

Cabrini Green Legal Aid (CGLA) has strengthened lives, assisted families and supported communities – one person at a time for over 40 years.  CGLA does more than give people a second chance – they are addressing the root causes of unemployment, homelessness, poverty and other challenges that contribute to crime and recidivism.  This is accomplished by combining high-quality legal services with supportive services coordinated through strategic partnerships with social service providers, government agencies, and other legal aid organizations.  Legal representation focuses on those negatively impacted by the criminal justice system through criminal defense work, criminal records work and civil cases that arise from criminal justice system involvement. 

Who We Serve

We serve residents of the City of Chicago in civil and criminal defense cases and residents of Cook County in criminal records cases with a household income within 150% of the federal poverty level (FPL).  In certain cases, we will accept individuals up to 200% of the FPL.  We are not required to and we do not ask about a client’s immigration status. 

Areas of Service 

CGLA provides both criminal and civil legal services, integrated with social work support, to individuals facing barriers stemming from an encounter with the criminal justice system.  We provide services in areas of acute need, including criminal records relief, defense, family and housing law. We partner with scores of law firms, corporate legal departments, and law schools to tap thousands of pro bono hours that multiply our impact.

·         Criminal Records Program: CGLA assists individuals in clearing their arrest and conviction records through a range of legal remedies, including expungement, sealing, clemency, health care waivers, certificates of good conduct, and certificates of relief from disability. The program includes our Help Desks at the Daley Center and the Markham Courthouse, our Criminal Records Corps of trained law students who bring these services to clients of homeless agencies, and individual advice and representation by staff and volunteer attorneys, including for clients of workforce development agencies and other partner organizations that serve people who face these barriers. 

·         Criminal Defense Program: CGLA is the only private agency in Chicago that provides criminal defense services to adults and juveniles throughout the City, positioning CGLA as the sole alternative to the Public Defender’s Office. CGLA’s criminal cases involve those who are unjustly accused, juveniles, those suffering from mental illness, first-time offenders, or others for whom CGLA believes our intervention can make a significant difference in the individual’s life. Each case that CGLA accepts is closely examined to ensure that we are, in fact, the best organization to assist the prospective client.

·         Family Law: CGLA represents individuals in family court, focusing our representation on previously unmarried parties (parentage cases) addressing issues of child support, child custody, child visitation and establishing paternity.  We provide representation to biological parents seeking to discharge guardianship of their children, as well as represent respondents in orders of protection.  We provide direct representation in complex and contested family law cases in our focused areas; legal referrals, advice, and pro-se document support; and community education and training.

·         Housing Law: CGLA’s Housing Law Program focuses on a significant area of need: defending tenants of subsidized housing who are unjustly threatened with eviction or voucher termination based on an allegation of criminal activity by a lease holder, family member, or guest. Additionally, CGLA represents individuals denied admission to subsidized housing based on criminal records.  CGLA’s efforts help prevent homelessness, displacement, and forced neighborhood relocation.

·         Client Support Services: Designed to complement our legal services, this program engages social workers to help growing numbers of our legal clients address challenges relevant to their legal problem as well as overcome barriers to leveraging a legal victory for positive life change.

Expungement Help Desks

-Richard J. Daley Center, 50 West Washington 10th Floor, Room 1006, Chicago, IL

-Markham Courthouse, 16501 Kedzie Avenue, Room 119, Markham, IL

-Juvenile Help Desk, Juvenile Court Building, 1100 S. Hamilton, ground floor (in partnership with LAF)

The Help Desks are available on a first-come, first-serve basis and provide a space for a person to receive individualized consultations and pro se document preparation for criminal records services. One must have a current rap sheet to be advised if they have any arrests in the City of Chicago, either as an adult or juvenile.  To obtain a rap sheet, please go to the Chicago Police Department, located at 3510 S. Michigan Avenue. Anyone seeking a rap sheet must first be fingerprinted and pay a $16 fee (juvenile rap sheets, however, are free).  Fingerprints are taken Monday through Friday, 8:00 am to 12:30 pm. Rap sheets can be picked up Monday through Friday the following week (juvenile rap sheets are available the same day). 

At the Help Desks, CGLA staff attorneys and trained volunteers will look at an individual’s rap sheet and research the corresponding court records.  If she/he qualifies, we help fill out the expungement or sealing forms. Individuals who do not qualify for expungement or sealing will be informed about alternative forms of relief from a criminal record and if meets guidelines, will be referred to CGLA or other appropriate legal aid agency.

 

  • Daley Center Help Desk.  Located in Room 1006 of the Daley Center (50 W. Washington), Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. and Thursday from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
  • Markham Courthouse Help Desk.  Located in Room 119, every Wednesday from 1000 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.  Rap sheets are only required if you have been arrested by the Chicago Police Department.
  • Expungement and Sealing Objection Call.  In partnership with Chicago Legal Clinic, we provide legal assistance at the expungement and sealing Court Call at 26th and California on Tuesday and Thursday from 1:30 p.m. until the call ends.
  • Juvenile Expungement Help Desk.  In collaboration with LAF, we provide juvenile expungement services at the Juvenile Court Building (1100 S. Hamilton) on the ground floor outside the Clerk’s Office, Monday and Tuesday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and Thursday, 9:00 a.m. to 12 noon.

View current federal poverty levels


10.

Asian American Legal Services Clinic
4753 North Broadway
Suite 700 Chicago, IL 60640| View map
Phone: (312) 332-1624
Languages: Chinese/Mandarin, English, Japanese, Russian, Vietnamese
Send email | View website

Asian American Legal Services Clinic offers legal services to the pan-Asian, immigrant, refugee, and low-income communities of Chicago. Legal help is free to those living at or below 125% of the Federal Poverty Level. The Clinic offers legal services to individuals with income above this level for a small fee in the areas of immigration, consumer issues, divorce, child custody, housing, employment, and public assistance. 

A monthly free legal clinic is offered on the first Wednesday of every month in the evening by volunteer attorneys at Asian Human Services' Uptown office.

Clients must provide their own translator.

Please contact Chicago Volunteer Legal Services (CVLS) to schedule an appointment for the Legal Services Clinic at (312) 332-1624.

 

View current federal poverty levels


11.

Lambda Legal Midwest Regional Office
105 W. Adams
Suite 2600 Chicago, IL 60603| View map
Phone: 312-663-4413
Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

Lambda Legal is committed to achieving full recognition of the civil right of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people and those with HIV.  The Midwest Regional Office has three attorneys devoted to sexual orientation, gender identity, and HIV/AIDS issues.

Lambda's Legal Help Desk responds directly to members of our communit(ies) who are seeking legal information and assistance with discrimination related to sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, and HIV status. 

The Midwest Regional Office accepts Help Desk calls at any time during business hours (M-F 10:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.). Call 312-663-4413, ask for the Help Desk, and a Help Desk staff person will assist you. If Help Desk staff is busy helping other callers, your call will automatically be routed to the Legal Help Desk voicemail.


12.

Chicago Volunteer Legal Services Foundation
33 North Dearborn
Suite 400 Chicago, IL 60602| View map
Phone: 312-332-1624
Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

CVLS represents low-income Chicagoans with a wide variety of civil legal problems, including divorce, adult and minor guardianships, adoption, tort defense, collection defense, bankruptcy, and landlord-tenant.  CVLS accepts clients whose income is up to 175% of the Federal Poverty guideline.

View current federal poverty levels


13.

Northwestern Bluhm Legal Clinic
Northwestern Bluhm Legal Clinic
357 East Chicago Avenue Chicago, IL 60611| View map
Phone: (312) 503-8576
Languages: English, French, German, Spanish
Send email | View website

The Children and Family Justice Center of the Bluhm Legal Clinic at Northwestern University School of Law represents children between the ages of six and eighteen in juvenile delinquency hearings, school expulsion hearings, and juvenile record expungement cases.


14.

Domestic Relations Self Help Desk
Richard J. Daley Center
50 West Washington
CL 16 (Concourse level) Chicago, IL 60602| View map
Phone: (312) 738-9200
Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

The Domestic Relations Self Help Desk offers free legal consultations to low-income people who cannot afford an attorney. CARPLS attorneys help people represent themselves in court on simple family matters and resolve issues after a divorce order is entered. People should bring all court documents with them, and will be served on a first come, first served basis. No appointment is necessary.

Hours are 9 am to - 1 pm, Monday through Friday (clients may check into the Resource Center in CL 16 prior to 9 am).

 

 


15.

Chicago Legal Clinic, Inc. - Downtown Office
211 W. Wacker Drive
Suite 750 Chicago, IL 60606| View map
Phone: 312-726-2938
Toll-free: 800-705-4055
Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

The Chicago Legal Clinic, Inc. (Clinic) provides legal representation on a sliding scale based on household income to disadvantaged individuals from its four offices.

Areas of law include: collection defense, debt counseling, environmental law, expungement of criminal records, family law (adoption, child support, divorce, paternity, visitation, and assistance to victims of domestic violence), guardianship of disabled adults, immigration, landlord/tenant, real estate closings, and social security disability claims.

The offices are located in the following locations: Austin Office: 118 North Central Avenue, Chicago, IL 60644; Downtown Office: 211 West Wacker Drive, Suite 750, Chicago, IL 60606; Pilsen Office: 1914 S. Ashland Street – Lower Level, Chicago, IL 60608; and South Chicago Office: 2938 E. 91st Street, Chicago, IL 60617.  For an appointment at a Clinic Office, individuals should call:  773-731-1762.

The Clinic operates the following Advice Desks that provide free legal assistance: Chancery Advice Desk: Richard J. Daley Center 50 West Washington Street Room CL-16 Chicago, IL 60602 Parentage and Child Support Pro Se Advice Desk: Richard J. Daley Center 50 West Washington Street Concourse Level, CL 24 Chicago, IL 60602.


16.

Domestic Violence Legal Clinic
555 West Harrison Street Chicago, IL 60607| View map
Phone: 312-325-9155
Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

The Domestic Violence Legal Clinic serves Survivors of domestic violence who need legal help. Attorneys help Survivors get an Order of Protection in a same day clinic setting, after a walk-in intake interview. 
Hours for intake are 8:30 am - 1:30 pm, Monday through Friday.


17.

Equip for Equality
20 N. Michigan Avenue
Suite 300 Chicago, IL 60602| View map
Phone: 800-537-2632
TTY: 800-610-2779
Toll-free: 800-537-2632
Languages: American Sign Language, English, Spanish
Send email | View website

The mission of Equip for Equality is to advance the human and civil rights of children and adults with physical and mental disabilities in Illinois.  Equip for Equality serves people who have:

  • a developmental disability such as autism, cerebral palsy and mental retardation.
  • a significant psychiatric disability such as depression, bipolar disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder and schizophrenia (we give priority to individuals at risk for abuse due to seclusion, restraint, and any related serious injuries or fatalities, neglect, or civil rights violations, while residing in residential facilities).
  • a disability as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act other than one that is developmental or psychiatric such as blindness, deafness or hard of hearing, diabetes, HIV/AIDS, paraplegia, quadriplegia and multiple sclerosis.
  • traumatic brain injuries (TBI).

Some of our work involves assistive technology needs, voting access and participation for individuals with disabilities, and vocational rehabilitation services, employment services, and other support services for Social Security beneficiaries with disabilities.

How to Request Services

People seeking assistance should call (800) 537-2632 on Monday, Wednesday, or Friday between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. We accept limited calls on Tuesday and Thursday from individuals in institutions (usually when they are emergencies only).


18.

Chicago Legal Clinic, Inc. -Parentage and Child Support Pro Se Advice Desk
Richard J. Daley Center
50 West Washington Street
Concourse Level, CL 24 Chicago, IL 60602| View map

Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

The Chicago Legal Clinic, Inc. - PARENTAGE AND CHILD SUPPORT PRO SE ADVICE DESK assists individuals who are not represented by an attorney in the following case types: Child Support and Paternity.  Attorneys at the Desk give brief information and advice, assist in completing forms, and provide referrals to free and low-cost lawyers. The attorneys do not represent people in court or in hearings, but will refer people in need of representation to the appropriate organization.   Days and Hours:  Monday to Friday, 9:30am to 3:30pm.

Description of The Chicago Legal Clinic, Inc. (Clinic) provides legal representation on a sliding scale based on household income to disadvantaged individuals from its four offices. Areas of law include: collection defense, debt counseling, environmental law, expungement of criminal records, family law (adoption, child support, divorce, paternity, visitation, and assistance to victims of domestic violence), guardianship of disabled adults, immigration, landlord/tenant, real estate closings, and social security disability claims. The offices are located in the following locations: Austin Office: 118 North Central Avenue, Chicago, IL 60644 Downtown: 211 West Wacker Drive, Suite 750, Chicago, IL 60606 Pilsen: 1914 S. Ashland Street – Lower Level, Chicago, IL 60608 South Chicago: 2938 E. 91st Street, Chicago, IL 60617 The Clinic operates the following Advice Desks that provide free legal assistance: Chancery Advice Desk: Richard J. Daley Center 50 West Washington Street Room CL-16 Chicago, IL 60602 Parentage and Child Support Pro Se Advice Desk: Richard J. Daley Center 50 West Washington Street Concourse Level, CL 24 Chicago, IL 60602


19.

Health and Disability Advocates
205 West Randolph Street
Suite 510 Chicago, IL 60606| View map
Phone: 312-223-9600
TTY: 800-427-0766
Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

HDA is a national non-profit based in Chicago that promotes income security, workforce development, and access to health services and resources for children, people with disabilities and low-income older adults. We do this through a combination of direct client services, training/technical support and advancing a public policy agenda.

HDA provides legal services to children with disabilities and their families in selected cases, and provides training and materials for families. HDA represents children and adults in the areas of Social Security, SSI, Children’s SSI, Medicaid, Medicare, and Insurance law.


20.

First Defense Legal Aid

Phone: 1-800-LAW-REP-4
Toll-free: 1-800-LAW-REP-4 (1-800-529-7374)
Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

If you or someone you know is in being held in custody by the Chicago Police Department, immediately call 1-800-LAW-REP-4 (1-800-529-7374) for a free lawyer, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

For over 15 years, First Defense Legal Aid has been dedicated to issues of indigent defense, police accountability, and the protection of civil rights. FDLA's mission is two-pronged: to ensure equal justice to people in custody at Chicago Police stations and to educate the people of Chicago about the power of their Constitutional rights.

First, FDLA provides a free, reliable, and experienced lawyer to individuals who are arrested in the city of Chicago. The FDLA attorney is available at the initial and most critical stage of the criminal justice process: from the time of arrest until the court system assigns a Public Defender. At the police station, the attorney helps the client understand and assert his rights, gathers information about arrest and detainment, documents evidence of police brutality, advocates for medical treatment, and informs the family and friends of the detainee throughout the process.

Second, in an effort to promote the Chicago Police Custody Hotline and educate Chicagoans on the power of their Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth Amendment rights, FDLA presents Street Law in schools and community groups. The Street Law presentations focus on what to do if you are stopped, searched, or arrested by the police, how to assert your rights on the street and at the station, and what to do if you feel that the police have violated your civil rights.

 


21.

Centro Romero
6216 North Clark Street Chicago, IL 60660| View map
Phone: 773-508-5300 ext. 19
Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

CENTRO ROMERO is a community center providing educational and social services to residents of Edgewater, Rogers Park and Uptown.

Our Legal Department provides citizenship and immigration services and representation to Latino immigrants for Family-Based Immigration and Citizenship cases (Family-Based Immigration; Adjustment of Status; Citizenship & Naturalization; Central American Political Asylum; ABC / NACARA suspension; Temporary Protected Status (TPS)). We do not accept Employment-Based Immigration cases or non-immigrant visa cases. To be eligible for services the family income must be below 200% of Federal Poverty Guidelines.

Our Public Benefits Outreach and Enrollment Program can help you find out if you qualify for a public benefit. We also offer free HIV and STD testing. We fill out applications/re-determinations for:

  • Food stamps (LINK)
  • Medicaid/Medicare
  • Social Security (Disability Claims)
  • Medical Card
  • All Kids
  • Women's Health

Remember! The medical card is for every child under 18 years old and pregnant women regardless of your immigration status.

 

 

View current federal poverty levels


22.

REACH Legal Clinic
Marquette Bank, Second Floor
6151 S. Pulaski Chicago, IL | View map
Phone: (312) 986-4200
Languages: English, Polish, Spanish
Send email | View website

Volunteer attorneys provide advice and referrals in the areas of family, housing, and consumer law issues.

To Make an Appointment: You must call our intake number, (312) 986-4200, during intake hours: Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Appointment Hours: Hours are second Saturday of every month from 9am to 12pm.

We provide the following services:

Advice and Representation on Family Law Issues

  • Child Support Clinic
  • Advice appointments with an experienced family law attorney
  • Representation for uncontested divorces through its Pro Bono panel

Advice and Representation on Housing and Consumer Issues

  • Eviction defense
  • Protection against creditors' unfair practices


23.

LAF Markham Courthouse Domestic Violence Project
Sixth Municipal District Courthouse
16501 South Kedzie Parkway Markham, IL 60428| View map

Languages: English
Send email | View website

LAF (Legal Assistance Foundation) staffs a Domestic Violence help desk at the Markham Courthouse on the 2nd and 4th Mondays of every month. LAF attorneys and volunteers provide advice, brief services and, in some cases, representation in court. Attorneys are happy to review pleadings, talk about the facts of a particular case, or discuss the procedure that victims of domestic violence can use to obtain protections such as Orders of Protection. In very limited circumstances, the attorney may refer the case for representation to LAF staff attorneys.


24.

Chicago Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law
100 North LaSalle Street
Suite 600 Chicago, IL 60602| View map
Phone: 312-630-9744
Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

The Chicago Lawyers' Committee works to protect the civil rights of poor, minority and disadvantaged people.  Our work is in the area of education, employment opportunity, fair housing, hate crimes and community economic development.

The Lawyers' Committee also runs a pro bono program to represent students in CPS expulsion hearings. Please contact us to do an intake interview if you have a student in that situation.


25.

Disability Rights Legal Center

Phone: 1-866-843-2572
Languages: Spanish, English
Send email | View website

The mission of the Disability Rights Legal Center (DRLC) is to champion the rights of people with disabilities through education, advocacy, and litigation.

The Cancer Legal Resource Center (CLRC) is a national, joint program of the Disability Rights Legal Center and Loyola Law School Los Angeles. The CLRC provides free information and resources on cancer-related legal issues to cancer survivors, caregivers, health care professionals, employers, and others coping with cancer.

A cancer diagnosis may carry with it a variety of legal issues, including insurance coverage, employment and taking time off work, access to health care and government benefits, and estate planning. These legal issues can cause people unnecessary worry, confusion, and stress, and can be overwhelming. When these legal issues are not addressed, people may find that although they have gotten through treatment, they have lost their homes, jobs, or insurance coverage.

Where Do You Turn For Help?

The CLRC has a national, toll-free Telephone Assistance Line (866-THE-CLRC) where callers can receive free and confidential information about relevant laws and resources for their particular situation. Members of the CLRC's Professional Panel of attorneys, insurance agents, and accountants can provide additional assistance.

The CLRC has assisted tens of thousands of individuals on the Telephone Assistance Line (866-THE-CLRC). Since its founding in 1997, the CLRC remains unique, providing invaluable cancer-related legal information and resources to people nationwide. The success of the Center's work is reflected in the enormous need for the information it provides. The CLRC continues to serve patients, caregivers, survivors, and others coping with cancer through the Telephone Assistance Line, conferences, seminars, workshops, education and outreach programs, and other cancer community activities.

For additional questions, please email CLRC@LLS.edu.

Visit www.CancerLegalResourceCenter.org for more information about cancer-related legal issues and services provided by the Cancer Legal Resource Center


26.

Lawyers for the Creative Arts
213 West Institute Place
Suite 403 Chicago, IL 60610| View map
Phone: 312-649-4111
Languages: English
Send email | View website

We provide free legal services to all areas of the arts: visual, performing and literary. We serve individuals and organizations. For free services, individuals must have a household income of $35,000 or less. Non-profit organizations must have a budget of $350,000 or less. We also serve profit making arts groups and persons over our eligibility limit on a reduced fee basis.  We assist with business formation, intellectual property protection, contracts, disputes and litigation, and rights of personality and publicity.  We can, occasionally, help with immigration matters but have few volunteers able to assist with these matters and plaintiff side employment cases.  Please see our website to review our Pro Bono Policies and Referral Procedures.

To apply for our services please visit www.law-arts.org and complete the online application.


27.

Guardianship Assistance Desk for Minors
69 West Washington
Room 1020 Chicago, IL 60602| View map
Phone: (312) 603-0135
Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

The Desk offers assistance for people who are representing themselves in seeking guardianship of a minor. The desk helps those without lawyers prepare the necessary court forms and prepare for court. Complex cases will be referred to an attorney for representation. 

This desk will help prospective guardians seek guardianship of the person, but not of the estate. We also offers self-help packets for those who wish to prepare their own forms. The packets contain necessary forms with instructions on how they should be prepared and explanations of guardianship requirements.

Assistance is available by appointment only. Appointments are available 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. and 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., Monday through Thursday. Receptionist is available 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.


28.

CDEL Adult Guardianship Help Desk
Richard J. Daley Center
50 West Washington Street
12th Floor - room 1202 Chicago, IL 60602| View map
Phone: 312-376-1880
Languages: English
Send email | View website

The Center for Disability & Elder Law (CDEL) helps run the Adult Guardianship Help Desk at the Daley Center.

The Help Desk assists persons who will appear without a lawyer in court proceedings for the adjudication of disability for an alleged disabled adult and appointment of a personal guardian. The staff will help you understand the court process and assist you in filling out required court forms. However, the Help Desk does not give legal advice or provide legal representation. Assistance is for filing a petition for guardianship of the person only, not of a person's estate.

Help Desk services are provided on a first-come, first-served basis Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on all days that the Circuit Court is in session. Help Desk staff does not provide assistance for proceedings in which a guardianship of the estate may be required or if the guardianship proceeding may be contested. Staff will provide referral information to other resources or to private attorney referral services for representation in these cases.


29.

Center for Disability and Elder Law
79 W. Monroe
Suite 919 Chicago, IL 60603| View map
Phone: 312-376-1880
Languages: English, Polish, Spanish
Send email | View website

The Center for Disability and Elder Law (CDEL) provides high-quality, pro bono legal assistance to persons marginalized by poverty, age and/or disability. CDEL’s organizational structure consists of a modest in-house staff which supports a network of hundreds of volunteer attorneys and paralegals. CDEL volunteers provide legal representation in a wide range of civil practice areas including: guardianship, simple estate planning, landlord/tenant, consumer fraud, civil rights, elder abuse and real estate. CDEL has also developed a number of limited engagement opportunities for those volunteers that are unable to handle cases that require long-term client commitments.

Adult Guardian Help Desk

CDEL also administers the Adult Guardianship Help Desk at the Daley Center. The Help Desk assists persons who will appear without a lawyer in court proceedings for the adjudication of disability for an alleged disabled adult and appointment of a personal guardian. The staff will help you understand the court process and assist you in filling out required court forms. However, the Help Desk does not give legal advice or provide legal representation.

Help Desk services are provided on a first-come, first-served basis Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on all days that the Circuit Court is in session. Help Desk staff does not provide assistance for proceedings in which a guardianship of the estate may be required or if the guardianship proceeding may be contested. Staff will provide referral information to other resources or to private attorney referral services for representation in these cases.
 


30.

Family Defense Center
70 East Lake Street
Suite 1100 Chicago, IL 60601| View map
Phone: 312-251-9800
Languages: English, Italian, Russian, Spanish
Send email | View website

The Family Defense Center's mission is to advocate justice for families in the child welfare system. We advocate for families who need our help the most: families threatened with losing their children to foster care.

The Family Defense Center provides legal representation in DCFS administrative hearings and a very limited number of child protection cases in the Juvenile Court of Cook County. These cases include, but are not necessarily limited to, providing legal advice during DCFS investigations and appealing DCFS "indicated" findings. Please note that while we can sometimes assist persons who live outside of Cook, Kane, Dupage, Lake, McHenry and Will County, we typically only provide direct representations in DCFS administrative hearings held in that five county area. Please contact us if you are seeking assistance with an Illinois DCFS case.

We charge sliding-scale fees for legal services. Our fees are determined based on your income and the size of your family. Families whose incomes are below 125% of the federal poverty guidelines are eligible for free or pro bono services. Before we agree to take your case, we will notify you in writing of any fees we are charging, including modest consultation fees for advice and referrals. We consider all requests for assistance on a case-by-case basis.

 

View current federal poverty levels


31.

Chicago Coalition for the Homeless Law Project
70 East Lake Street
Suite 700 Chicago, IL 60601| View map
Phone: 312-641-4140
Toll-free: 1-800-940-1119
Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

The Chicago Coalition for the Homeless (CCH) organizes and advocates to prevent and end homelessness based on our belief that housing is a human right in a just society. The Law Project provides civil legal services in select cases that will advance the legal rights and remedies of persons experiencing homelessness or at risk of homelessness.


32.

Legal Advocacy Center of the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago
216 W Jackson
8th floor Chicago, IL 60606| View map
Phone: 312-673-2740
Languages: English
Send email | View website

Legal Advocacy Center of the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago provides legal representation, consultations, and information and referral services and specializes in the areas of special education law, mental health and developmental disabilities law, and adult guardianship law. 


33.

Lawyers' Committee for Better Housing
33 N LaSalle
Suite 900 Chicago, IL 60602| View map
Phone: 312-347-7600
TTY: 312-347-7603
Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

 

Lawyers Committee for Better Housing (LCBH) helps low and moderate income renters in Chicago, including Housing Choice Voucher holders. LCBH accepts clients on a case-by-case basis depending on need and situation.  To qualify for services ALL renters must go through the LCBH intake process.  Eviction cases often move very quickly, so contact our office as soon as possible to allow enough time for us determine if and how we can help.

To find out if LCBH can help you, call 312-784-3527.

We provide FREE legal assistance to renters to help resolve serious housing issues, such as:

·         Eviction (5 day notice/non-payment of rent, alleged criminal activity, leave violations, etc.)

·         Building foreclosure (foreclosure assistance is also available statewide)

·         Housing discrimination

·         Unsafe apartment or building conditions (broken doors or windows, bedbugs, roaches, rats, mice, mold, burst pipes, no heat, leaking roof, etc.)

·         Landlord retaliation because you are trying to solve a problem in the building

·         Utility shut-off by your landlord (heating, water, electricity)
·      Illegal lock-outs
·         Issues with your landlord requiring the help of an attorney
 
Our staff can protect your rights and will work with you to reach the best solution for your situation in terms that you understand and meet with your approval.
 
LCBH also offers statewide assistance to tenants in foreclosure through the Tenants in Foreclosure Help Line and Help Desk.
If you are a renter living in a foreclosed building or condo, regardless of income or location in Illinois, LCBH may be able to assist you. In addition to the Help Lines available for renters inside and outside the city of Chicago, there is also a help desk located on the 14th floor of the Richard M. Daley Center located in downtown Chicago. For help desk hours, please call, 312-347-7600.
Tenants in Foreclosure Help Line Numbers:
Chicago:  312-784-3507
Statewide (toll free): 855-207-8347

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


34.

LAF Bankruptcy Help Desk
The Dirksen Federal Courthouse
219 S. Dearborn Street
Room 622 Chicago, IL 60604| View map
Phone: 312-435-6032
Languages: English
Send email

The Bankruptcy Help Desk provides help to people who do not have a bankruptcy attorney. Lawyers provide information, advice and brief legal assistance. Help Desk lawyers cannot represent people in court, but can help file a bankruptcy case, answer questions about completing schedules and make referrals to lawyers, legal aid hotlines, government agencies, and social services that can offer further help. The Help Desk also provides free access to a computer to find online legal information, forms and resources.

Hours are Monday - Friday, 9:30 am to 12:30 pm. Help is available on a first come, first served basis. No appointment is necessary.


35.

The Immigration Project, Inc.
510 E Washington St, Ste 318
PO Box 3065 Bloomington, IL 617023065| View map
Phone: 309-829-8703
Toll-free: 800-298-3235
Languages: English, French, Spanish
Send email | View website

The Immigration Project is a not-for-profit organization consisting of three lawyers, one citizenship specialist, and a team of volunteers who desire to inform you of your immigration status and rights according to current law and your particular situation.  We offer free initial 45-minute consultations where you can ask all your questions.  Whether or not we would take your case is a matter for discussion during that consultation.  for domestic violence cases, we charge a small fee for postage and copying.  For Lawful Permanent Residents applying for citizenship, our services are only $10.00 for all cases that do not need representation (over 60%).  Deferred Action cases (also referred to as "DREAMers" or "Student Program" or "Obama Program") are charged $200 or less.  All other cases (family reunification, temporary protected status, renewals of work permits or Permanent Resident cards, naturalization cases that need representation, etc.) are charged on a sliding scale fee according to the size and income of the family. 

We are based in Bloomington Illinois and have a monthly consultation clinic in our home office, but travel every six weeks to the Quad Cities, Kankakee,  East St. Louis and Carbondale.  We also offer consultation clinics every three months in LaSalle, Champaign and Peoria.  We have traveled to other areas as the need or request demands.  Beginning in 2012 we began offering 6 to 9 Saturday walk-in clinics per year in communities not on our regular travel schedule.  We offer free Citizenship Information Meetings in each of these locations and sometimes include help afterwards with the initial paperwork required to be completed by the client.  We will also conduct Citizenship Information Meetings by Skype in any location in central and southern Illinois.

For all cases except citizenship, it is necessary to arrange an appointment ahead of time to get a consultation.  Email is the quickest and most efficient way to get a reply, but the phone lines are open on Mondays between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. for this purpose.

Please note that the Immigration Project does NOT serve the following 16 Counties: Boone, Carroll, Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Jo Daviess, Kane, Kendall, Lake, Lee, McHenry, Ogle, Stephenson, Whiteside, Will, and Winnebago. 

rev. Nov 2013


36.

John Marshall Law School Veterans Legal Support Center & Clinic
315 South Plymouth Court Chicago , IL 60604| View map
Phone: 312 360 2656
Languages: English
Send email | View website

The Veterans Legal Support Center & Clinic (VLSC) specializes in appealing denied veteran’s benefits claims, including service-connected benefits, pension benefits, survivor benefits, and education benefits. The VLSC works on all aspects of Veteran Benefits Administration claims, from the initial, factual intake to the technical representation of claims at the appellate level. To effectively represent veterans in the VA claims process, the VLSC recruits, trains, and manages a network of pro bono


37.

LAF Juvenile Expungement Help Desk
Juvenile Court Building
1100 S. Hamilton--next to the Clerk's office on the ground floor. Chicago, IL 60612| View map
Phone: (312) 229-6359
Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

Help Desk Hours:

  • Mondays: 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
  • Tuesdays: 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
  • Thursdays 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

The Juvenile Expungement Help Desk assists people who were arrested or had a juvenile delinquency court case and wish to clear their juvenile criminal records. Juvenile records are not expunged automatically, and a record exists even if the person never went to court and was only arrested. Juvenile expungement is widely available beginning at age 17, though some waiting periods may apply depending on the outcomes of delinquency cases.

At the Desk, individuals can meet with an attorney who will review their juvenile arrest record, assist with the necessary paperwork and, when necessary, provide additional legal assistance. The attorney will also help eligible people file fee waivers so that the entire process can be completed for free.

Anyone interested in receiving assistance at the Help Desk must bring a copy of their arrest record (or “rap sheet”) with them to the desk. Chicago Police Department ("CPD") arrest records are available at the CPD headquarters Access and Review Division (3510 S. Michigan Ave.). Juvenile rap sheets are free and available immediately. Anyone who has also been arrested after their 17th birthday should bring a copy of their adult rap sheet as well. Adult rap sheets from CPD cost $16.00 and may require a waiting period of several days.
 


38.

Chicago Legal Clinic, Inc. - Chancery Division Advice Desk
50 W. Washington, Richard J. Daley Center
Room CL-16 Chicago, IL 60602| View map

Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

The Chancery Division Advice Desk offers pro se (self-represented) litigants free assistance with filling out court-required forms and understanding court procedures for mortgage foreclosures, name changes, and appeals of administrative review decisions, as well as all matters heard in the Chancery Division.

The Desk is staffed by volunteer attorneys from the Chicago Legal Clinic. Please note the Desk does not offer legal representation.

The following services are provided at the Chancery Division Advice Desk:

  • a brief, one-time only consultation with a volunteer attorney to assess the nature, complexity and viability of a case;
  • explanation of court procedures;
  • assistance with filling out court-required forms;
  • referral to free or low-cost legal assistance organizations or bar referral programs for litigants who decide not to continue pro se and desire the services of an attorney; and
  • referral for qualified litigants to the Chicago Bar Association’s Access to Justice pro bono program, in which judges appoint counsel in appropriate cases from a list of volunteer attorneys who provide free legal counsel for litigants unable to obtain representation.

To allow the Chancery Advice Desk to serve as many self-represented litigants as possible, please note the following:

  • Litigants are not allowed follow-up consultations and may not return to the Advice Desk after their consultation unless specifically asked to do so by a volunteer attorney or referred by a judge.
  • Unlike criminal cases, there is no right to counsel in civil cases.
  • Desk staff may not be able to assist litigants with highly complex cases that require legal representation.
  • Litigants are asked to be patient as staff assists other litigants.

Hours: 9am-4pm, Monday through Friday. No appointment necessary.

Spanish assistance available daily.

 

The Chicago Legal Clinic, Inc. (Clinic) provides legal representation on a sliding scale based on household income to disadvantaged individuals from its four offices. Areas of law include: collection defense, debt counseling, environmental law, expungement of criminal records, family law (adoption, child support, divorce, paternity, visitation, and assistance to victims of domestic violence), guardianship of disabled adults, immigration, landlord/tenant, real estate closings, and social security disability claims. The offices are located in the following locations: Austin Office: 118 North Central Avenue, Chicago, IL 60644 Downtown: 211 West Wacker Drive, Suite 750, Chicago, IL 60606 Pilsen: 1914 S. Ashland Street – Lower Level, Chicago, IL 60608 South Chicago: 2938 E. 91st Street, Chicago, IL 60617 The Clinic operates the following Advice Desks that provide free legal assistance: Chancery Advice Desk: Richard J. Daley Center 50 West Washington Street Room CL-16 Chicago, IL 60602 Parentage and Child Support Pro Se Advice Desk: Richard J. Daley Center 50 West Washington Street Concourse Level, CL 24 Chicago, IL 60602


39.

Daley Center Pro Se Help Desk
Richard J. Daley Center
50 West Washington
Room 602 Chicago, IL 60602| View map
Phone: (312) 603-5626
Languages: English, Polish, Spanish
Send email | View website

The Pro Se Help Desk provides assistance to individuals representing themselves in Pro Se Court without a lawyer where they are seeking to recover money damages up to $1,500. Typical cases include auto damage, clothing loss or damage, debt collection, and tenant/landlord claims. Those filing a case may visit the Pro Se Help Desk for free assistance in interpreting and filling out court documents. Trained staff members also advise pro se plaintiffs and defendants of any required court fees and provide explanations of how to follow the judge's orders. The staff of the Pro Se Help Desk does not provide legal advice.

Hours are 8:30 am to 4:30 pm, Monday through Friday.

Foreign language interpreters are available upon request. To request an interpreter for a language other than Spanish or Polish, please notify the Pro Se Help Desk at 312-603-5626 prior to your arrival.
 


40.

Center for Economic Progress - Tax Clinic
567 West Lake Street
Suite 1150 Chicago, IL 60661| View map
Phone: 312-252-0280
Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

The Center for Economic Progress - Tax Clinic provides pro bono advice and legal representation to individuals and families that face a controversy with the Internal Revenue Service. The clinic helps taxpayers interpret letters they have received from the IRS regarding their tax returns and helps undocumented immigrants file a tax return even if they do not have a Social Security number.

The clinic also assists taxpayers who have received an examination (audit) notice or who are involved with the Appeals Division of the IRS. Most cases are settled, but if necessary the clinic will represent the taxpayer in the U.S. Tax Court. 

The clinic serves residents of Illinois, Wisconsin and northwest Indiana with incomes at or below 250% of poverty.


41.

Chicago-Kent Low Income Taxpayer Clinic
565 W. Adams St.
Suite 600 Chicago, IL 60661| View map
Phone: 312-906-5050
Languages: English
Send email | View website

Need assistance fighting the IRS on tax disputes? The Chicago Kent College of Law low-income taxpayer clinic handles a variety of disputes, including collection matters, audits or appeals and litigation before the Internal Revenue Service, United States Tax Court and the United States District Court. No fee is charged to clients who meet the following requirements:

1. You must have a current dispute with the Internal Revenue Service
2. There must be no more than $50,000 in dispute for any single tax year
3. Your current yearly income must be less than 250% of the federal poverty guidelines

View current federal poverty levels


42.

LAF Pro Se Bankruptcy Clinic
120 S. LaSalle Street, Suite 900 Chicago, IL 60304| View map
Phone: 312-431-2231
Languages: American Sign Language, Arabic, Cambodian, Chinese/Mandarin, English, Farsi, French, French Creole, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Laotian, Polish, Russian, Spanish, Tribal Languages, Urdu, Vietnamese
Send email | View website

LAF (Legal Assistance Foundation) is now offering a free monthly clinic for individuals wishing to file Chapter 7 bankruptcy on their own without an attorney (pro se).  The clinic is open to those who are not in emergency situations (e.g. foreclosure sale in the next few days, disconnected utilities) and who are not filing bankruptcy because they are behind on car, condo, house, or apartment payments and want to keep the car, condo, house or apartment.  Additionally, because of the clinic’s length, the Pro Se Clinic is not for those wishing to file bankruptcy in the next thirty days.  The purpose of the clinic is to enable pro se litigants to complete their own forms and petitions and to appear in court without a lawyer. Additionally, clinic participants must have limited income and assets. 
 

For more information and for pre-screening, potential registrants must call 312-431-2231 beforehand to listen to a message and to leave their names and phone numbers.  LAF will then contact them for a phone screening, and, where appropriate, complete and confirm registration.
 


43.

Illinois Pension Assistance Project

Phone: 617-287-7307
Toll-free: 1-888-425-6067
Languages: English
Send email | View website

Illinois Pension Assistance Project

The Illinois Pension Assistance Project, staffed by experienced pension lawyers and pension counselors, helps you understand your rights under pension law and claim the retirement income benefits that you have earned. The assistance is free of charge to anyone who lives in Illinois with a pension question or problem, regardless of age or income.

Contact us to:

  • provide comprehensive assistance on private or public pension issues
  • unravel complex pension plan documents and calculate benefit amounts;
  • track down retirement benefits from former employers
  • appeal benefit denials and correct miscalculations

For assistance call our intake line toll-free at 888.425.6067.

or complete our online form at:

http://www.umb.edu/pensionaction/ipap/pac_ipap_request_assistance


44.

The Judge William J. Hibbler Memorial Pro Se Assistance Program
The Dirksen Federal Courthouse
219 S. Dearborn
20th floor, room 2056A Chicago, IL 60604| View map
Phone: 312-435-5691
Languages: English
Send email | View website

Lawyers provide self represented persons in federal court with information, advice and limited legal help at The Judge William J. Hibbler Memorial Pro Se Assistance Program. We do not represent people in court, but can help with preparing court documents, provide information about federal court procedures, and help find free legal information. We also refer people to legal aid offices and social services that might offer further help. The Help Desk also provides free access to a computer to find online legal information, forms and resources.

Hours are Monday - Friday, 8:30 am to 4:30 pm, by appointment only. Appointments can be made at the Clerk's office on the 20th floor or by calling 312-435-5691.


45.

Loyola Tax Clinic
One East Pearson St. Chicago, IL 60602| View map
Phone: 312-915-7176
Languages: English
Send email | View website

The Tax Clinic provides all services necessary to completely resolve an individual's federal tax problem. In pre-assessment situations, the clinic is generally involved in contesting a deficiency proposed by the IRS during an examination of the client's return. In post-assessment situations, the Clinic is generally involved in dealing with taxpayers' collection issues.


46.

The Law Project
100 North LaSalle Street
Suite 600 Chicago, IL 60602| View map
Phone: 312-939-3638
Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

The Law Project (TLP) of the Chicago Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights meets the transactional legal needs of nonprofit community organizations and low income entrepreneurs by recruiting volunteer attorneys to negotiate and review contracts and leases, develop or revise corporate documents (bylaws, board policies, etc.), protect intellectual property, develop or revise employment policies, guide directors serving on Boards about their fiduciary obligations, real estate acquisition and financing and other legal matters that are not in dispute or litigation.

Nonprofit community- based organizations serving low-income neighborhoods or populations in the greater Chicago metropolitan area may be eligible for TLP's legal services. The Law Project coordinates free legal services for the transactional needs of these organizations if the organization has insufficient funds to hire counsel, is accountable to the community, and the proposed project will provide social services and/or revitalize the neighborhood and increase community control.  

Low income entrepreneurs are eligible for representation through the Small Business Program if they have a completed a business plan, and are able to articulate the need for the business and its impact on the surrounding community and match the income eligibility requirements set for below.  The Law Project coordinates free legal services for the transactional needs of eligible entrepreneurs.   Income eligibility ranges from $40,000 household income for a family of 1 to $60,000 household income for a family of 5.

Some areas of law TLP commonly assists with include, but are not limited to: obtaining recognition of 501(c)(3) public charity status using IRS Form 1023, maintaining tax exempt status under 501(c), nonprofit and small business organizing documents including articles of incorporation and LLC operating agreements, commercial leases, contract drafting, licensing agreements, Illinois Attorney General Charitable Organization registration (Forms CO-1, CO-2), charity compliance guidance (including when to file IRS Form 990), employment law documentation, employee versus independent contractor distinction, real estate closings for single family homes through the CHA Choose to Own Program, and intellectual property.

TLP's application for legal assistance is available at www.thelawproject.org/apply 

 


47.

Loyola Business Law Clinic
25 E. Pearson St.
Suite 1200 Chicago, IL 60611| View map
Phone: 312-915-7130
Languages: English
Send email | View website

The Business Law Center Clinic (the "BLCC") at Loyola University Chicago's School of Law provides entrepreneurs and small business owners affordable, quality legal assistance with for profit ventures, as well as pro bono legal assistance to not-for-profit organizations.

Law student clinicians in the BLCC may provide their clients with legal assistance concerning choice of entity, corporate entity formation, basic contract review and drafting, commercial leases, zoning requirements, business licenses and permits, and applications for tax-exempt status for not-for-profits. The BLCC does not currently provide assistance with complicated tax matters, sophisticated intellectual property matters, or litigation matters.

Law student clinicians are supervised by and work closely with the Director of the BLCC, a member of the Illinois Bar and the faculty at Loyola's School of Law.


48.

Domestic Violence Pro Se Assistance Area - District 1 Independent Civil Order of Protection Courtroom
555 W. Harrison Street Chicago, IL 60607| View map
Phone: 312-827-2450
Languages: English, Spanish

The District 1 (Chicago) Civil Order of Protection Courtroom only hears cases related to domestic violence. The Office of the Circuit Court Clerk of Cook County manages the Pro Se Assistance Area (PSAA.) The PSAA serves all victims of domestic violence who choose to request a civil order of protection without a lawyer (‘Pro Se’). The Clerk’s staff is trained in domestic violence issues and can give referrals, forms and assistance in completing the forms. A simple guide is available to help people seeking a civil order of protection in completing the forms. A bi-lingual Spanish-speaking clerk is available. Staff is not allowed to give legal advice.

Hours are 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Domestic violence advocates from several domestic violence agencies are available to offer assistance, help in completing the forms, support in court, referrals, and information on safety issues. Domestic violence advocates are not attorneys.

The Domestic Violence Legal Clinic, located at 555 W. Harrison, Suite 1900, is available for victims of domestic violence who need legal assistance. Attorneys staff the Domestic Violence Legal Clinic (DVLC). Victims of domestic abuse may qualify for assistance from DVLC, depending on their income. The clinic is open 8:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. Monday through Friday.

Private Attorney Referrals

1.

Hispanic Lawyers Association of Illinois Lawyer Referral Service
321 South Plymouth Court Chicago, IL 60604| View map
Phone: 312-554-2045
Languages: English, Spanish
Send email | View website

Our 24-hour answering service provides referrals to private English/Spanish-speaking attorneys with experience in every area of the law.  Please call 312-554-2045.


2.

Chicago Bar Association Lawyer Referral Service
321 South Plymouth Court Chicago, IL 60604| View map
Phone: 312-554-2001
TTY: 312-554-2055
Languages: Chinese/Mandarin, English, German, Japanese, Russian, Spanish
Send email | View website

The Chicago Bar Association Lawyer Referral Service refers clients to private attorneys who have been screened for experience in more than 45 areas of law, such as: criminal and juvenile law, personal injury, estate planning and trusts, and domestic relations. In addition, the LRS offers a broad range of attorneys in various practices who speak foreign languages including Spanish, Lithuanian, German, Japanese, Chinese and many others. Lawyer referrals are available through the web site or by phone Monday - Friday from 9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.


3.

West Suburban Bar Association Lawyer Referral Service
1317 S. First Avenue Maywood, IL 60153| View map
Phone: 708-338-2662
Languages: English
Send email

Persons living in the western suburbs can seek a lawyer with the help of the West Suburban Bar Association, which will refer prospective clients to Members who participate in the program. Members interview prospective clients for a $25 consultation fee, payable to the Association. Members may accept or reject the case and set their own fees.


4.

IllinoisLawyerFinder.com
Illinois State Bar Association
424 South Second Street Springfield, IL 62701| View map
Phone: 217-525-5297 (LAWS)
Toll-free: 800-922-8757
Languages: English
Send email | View website

Illinois Lawyer Finder is the Illinois State Bar Association's lawyer directory. This online referral service is designed to serve everyone who can afford the services of a lawyer. If you prefer a telephone referral please call Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. We charge no referral fee, and our operators can put you in touch with a lawyer in your area who has agreed to provide an initial consultation for no more than $25 for the first half-hour.


5.

Lesbian & Gay Bar Association of Chicago Lawyer Referral Service
P.O. Box 64933 Chicago, IL 60664| View map
Phone: 312-807-4401
Languages: English
Send email | View website

We provide referrals to GLBT or GLBT-friendly Chicago-area attorneys. Please call 312-807-4401.


6.

Cook County Bar Association Lawyer Referral Service
120 West Madison
Suite 450 Chicago, IL 60602| View map
Phone: 312-630-1157
Languages: English
Send email | View website

Call our office at 312-630-1157, Monday to Friday between 11am and 3pm for referrals to private attorneys.


7.

Northwest Suburban Bar Association Lawyer Referral Service
800 East Northwest Highway
Suite 418 Palitine, IL 60074| View map
Phone: 847-221-2601
Languages: English
Send email | View website

Call the Attorney Referral Service to get the name and telephone number of a participating attorney in the Northwest Suburbs of Chicago who practices in the area of your need. Callers are responsible for making the appointment with the attorney and will receive a one half-hour consultation for a charge of $25.00, which is due at the time of the consultation.

Or go to the Public Access Directory on our website for a listing of attorneys and the areas in which they concentrate.