Legal Aid or Free Legal Advice During Your Divorce

WOMAN MEETING WITH LAWYER OR LEGAL ADVISOR
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What do you do when you can't afford a divorce attorney?

 

What is Legal Aid?

Legal aid, known by some as the "Legal Aid Society" is an organization set up in every state to assist those in need of legal advice but without the financial means to pay. 

Each state has a legal aid office set up to assist people who cannot afford to pay for legal representation during a civil or criminal case. Basically legal aid is set up so that low-income litigants can have access to equal justice despite their financial barriers.

If you need low-cost or free legal services or advice and meet the requirements you can find legal aid services in most states and communities. The waiting period can be long so, don’t wait until the last minute to contact your local legal aid society and start the process.

You will be assigned an attorney who has experience in divorce cases, child custody cases or domestic abuse cases. There are pros and cons to working with a legal aid attorney. Pro, you can afford them, con, they are underpaid and overworked so, your representation may be subpar. 

Who Qualifies For Legal Aid?

Those people who meet the following guidelines are often eligible for free legal aid:

  • Your income must be less than 125% of the federal poverty guidelines but slightly higher income levels may also meet eligibility.
  • Age 60 and above for some legal issues. Elderly people on Medicaid may be eligible for legal aid services.
  • People with disabilities.
  • Victims of domestic abuse.
  • Some low-income military members.
  • Special circumstances such as custody cases in which children are being abused.

Services are not offered in civil divorce cases unless domestic or child abuse can be proven. Legal aid doesn't help the vast majority of those going through a divorce since most divorce cases don't involve domestic or child abuse.

 

How do I Find Free or Low Cost Legal Aid?

To find legal aid services in your area lick on your state link below. Contact that organization or program listed on your state’s website for a referral to a divorce attorney in your area.

Select Your State: