A combination of direct aid and referrals are used by the Voluntary Legal Services Program of Northern California in an effort to help low income families. The pro-bono firm is the leading organization for Sacramento, and assistance is also available for the counties of San Joaquin, Placer, Yolo, and El Dorado. Clients that are found to be eligible can receive representation for a number of civil legal issues.
Free Eviction Defense, and support for other housing concerns, may be provided. There is a limited amount of advice offered by attorneys to those tenants that are faced with unlawful detainer actions. Voluntary Legal Services Program will help low-income and working poor clients stay in their homes or apartments when they are being evicted unfairly. In addition, other cases handled include disputes with security deposits or if there is unsafe housing being provided by a landlord.
While in some cases, staff from VLSP will handle the issue, in many other instances the firm will offer referrals to partner agencies in the greater Sacramento region. However each professional wants to stop homelessness and find some type of beneficial solution to those facing an eviction. They also strive to ensure all families, seniors, and disabled have a safe place to live.
Workplace and employment matters are handled from clinics and workshops. Legal Services of Northern California can offer free advice to people that may have been illegally terminated or discriminated against. Or if you need help in claiming unemployment benefits, then that may be provided too. Individuals from the community also tend to seek support with unpaid wage disputes, workplace harassment, and many other matters.
Most of these programs run through the Employment Clinic in Sacramento. There are law students, paralegals, and highly skilled attorneys on site that can all help. The goal is to always give clients high quality legal advice and support.
In addition to receiving assistance from the clinic, clients are strongly encouraged to use informational and self-help packets that are available. The fact is that VLSP has limited resources and staffing, and many people will be denied support due to these limited resources. So the self-help material is also very important. For more details on how to get free legal help with employment matters, dial (916) 551-2102.
More general Family Law matters can be supported. This is very limited though, and may not be as high priority as say preventing evictions. Referrals or support may be provided for visitation, divorce, establishing paternity, setting child and spousal support, and similar issues. They do not deal with CPS - Protective Services custody issues.
If your benefits have been terminated, the attorneys or staff from Voluntary Legal Services Program of Northern California may be able to help. They will not assist with initial applications for public assistance though. So for example, if you were receiving SSI or maybe Cal Fresh food stamps, and then the government stopped them for a questionable reason, then this is when free assistance may be offered. The firm also relies on partners in San Joaquin, Yolo, and Sacramento to help with this, so they may offer referrals.
Bankruptcy Law as well as Debt Collection is also a focus. This falls under consumer concerns. VLSP helps low income individuals address illegal debt collection practices, consolidate medical or credit card bills, and similar matters. Or if clients are fighting predatory lenders, then get an attorney on your side for that as well. They can also ensure your credit scores are correct, resolve disputes over insurance claims, and even provide legal help with auto repossessions. Much more is offered as well.
All clients need to go to a Bankruptcy Clinic or Debt Collection workshop first. This will include an evaluation of their financial situation, review of income and expenses, and more. While representation is not usually available for this, the firm may have information or referrals to who can help. This may even include local non-profit credit counselors in the region. Dial (916) 551-2102.
Seniors can take advantage of the Estate Planning services. This will include activities such as preparing a Living Trust or Will, assisting with completing Powers of Attorney for Health Care, and similar items. They can answer questions or issues that may come up after a death, and really help the elderly in any way possible. For more information, dial (916) 551-2102.
The volunteers, students, and experienced attorneys all work to ensure everyone, regardless of income, has access to quality legal advice. This is the goal that they try to meet. The phone number for more information is (916) 551-2102.
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