Several law clinics and projects across Pierce County Washington are available. Depending on the client’s income, they may be able to receive free advice and support from the attorney or their staff. Volunteers, paralegals, specialists, and others in the community work with clients on various issues, most of which are touched upon below.
Tenants can receive help from the Tacoma-Pierce County Housing Justice Project. It will assist individuals or families that are facing eviction or that have disputes with their landlords. Even individuals in apartment communities can receive support. Some of the common requests and issues supported include for security deposits, moving expenses, review of lease agreements, and discrimination. The number for this resource is (253) 572-5134.
The Tacoma Lawhelp Center will help clients with a number of issues. Most of the aid is provided on a first come and served basis, for those that qualify and as resources allow. This location also helps with tenant rights as well as Family Law issues.
The volunteer lawyers may be able to offer some free aid to those that meet income qualifications. This can include review paperwork or forms the client has. They will also offer referrals to other Tacoma County resources if and when needed.
The Neighborhood Legal Clinic is another option. The services are available by appointment only, and it is located at Pierce County Law Library, 930 Tacoma Ave. S. This center will cover all aspects of law and provide various support services to tenants. So it may cover things such as applying for government benefits, utility disconnections, and some of those other countless issues that people face.
There are also various clinics focused on specific needs. While in some cases the advice will be provided for free, in others there may be some minimal costs involved from the client. This may depend on their income, age (as some elderly may qualify for support regardless of their income) and other factors.
Bankruptcy and assistance with Consumer Credit issues is provided by Volunteer Legal Services. Individuals from the community can call the center for an appointment. They should bring documentation with them, such as copy of debts, income statements, and more information as needed.
The Multicultural Self-Sufficiency Movement legal clinic may be another service for more non-English speakers in the Pierce County area. There may be some interpretation services available as well, such as for Russian and Korean based immigrants. The location is 3820 Steilacoom Blvd SW in Tacoma.
Homeowners may be able to get free help from the Home Justice Legal Clinic as well. Staff, including both attorneys or non-profit credit counselors, can offer assistance for foreclosure. Some of the key partners for this service include Seattle University School of Law's Foreclosure Mediation & Outreach as well as the Northwest Justice Project's Foreclosure Prevention Unit. This is in addition to the other housing services that can be addressed as noted above.
Family law issues can be supported by the Pro Se Clinic. Attorneys or law students may help review paperwork, help with temporary orders, dissolution of marriage, child support, and more. For clients, such as seniors, that need a will created or updated, there may be help for that as well. (253) 572-5134.
Youth from Pierce County can also get help for their various needs. There is support for those that are in the Extended Foster Care system or younger residents impacted by educational issues. For example, there is services from a program known as Lawyers Helping Youth Access School.
It is operated as a pro bono project of the TeamChild and other non-profits in Pierce County. If you need help in dealing with a school discipline issue, clients may be able to get assistance from this program. For more information on aid provided to the youth in the region, or the VLS Program, call (253) 274-9929.
Another option is the Volunteer Lawyers for Dependent Youth program. This is for younger people that are entering the Extended Foster Care system in Tacoma County that are referred by the court. When needed, the attorneys from a pro-bono firm can often provide advice and guidance regarding the choices facing dependent youth. The number for this service is (253) 572-5134.
Other services can include the AIDS Foundation Wills Project, assistance for people to reinstate their driver’s license, support for Native Americans, and more. The bottom line is that residents in Pierce County have many different options available to them for their legal needs. 621 Tacoma Avenue South, Suite 303, Tacoma, Washington, 98402, call 1-888-822-5134.
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