The available cases are pending referral to a pro bono attorney for a consultation.
The assigned pro bono attorney determines if representation is needed once the consultation is complete.
To accept a pro bono case, you must first register with the Volunteer Lawyers Program. If you have already registered and are interested in a case below, please contact Elva Kennis – ekennis [at] bals.org.
Pro Bono Case Summaries – July 2021
NOTE: All cases below can be handled remotely. Additional up-to-date pro bono cases are listed at the bottom.
Case # 21-xxx6333 (Divorce)
Our Spanish-speaking only client seeks a divorce from her husband of 30 years. The parties have been separated for almost 2 years and their two children are adults. Client has been a homemaker throughout their marriage but she does not wish to seek alimony because husband is disabled and his income is limited to Social Security. However, husband has agreed to pay for client’s car insurance. The only marital assets are two vehicles and a joint bank account. Client seeks assistance in filing a dissolution of marriage.
Case # 21-xxx9574 (Paternity)
Client has a 10-month-old son. Child’s father was murdered last year. Paternity had not been established prior to his passing and his name is not on the child’s birth certificate. DNA test taken by paternal grandmother shows a 98.55 % of relatedness. Client would like to establish paternity of child so she may seek Social Security Survivor Benefits for child. Father had no assets at the time of his passing.
Case # 20-xxx9287 (Guardian Advocacy)
Our client seeks assistance in becoming guardian advocate for her developmentally disabled 31-year-old daughter. Client’s daughter suffers from Down Syndrome/Mental Retardation and functions on the level of an 8-year-old child. Volunteer attorney needed to represent client in this proceeding.
Case # 21-xxx4205 (Consumer)
Our client needs assistance with a Consumer matter. He previously purchased a motorhome and made substantial improvements with plans to live in it. However, the client was not aware the title issued was listed as certificate of destruction. He contacted the DMV to reissue a new title as ‘rebuildable’ instead of ‘salvageable’ but was advised that a court order was needed to change the title. Volunteer attorney needed to represent client in the court process.
Case #21-xxx1340 (Consumer Law)
Client purchased a used vehicle with cash from a used car dealer. She also purchased a warranty through the dealer and was paying $50 per month for the coverage. Client states that vehicle had over 200,000 miles when she purchased it. Within just a couple of weeks, the vehicle had issues and she took it to a dealership to fix the car under the warranty. She was told by the dealership that the vehicle’s actual mileage exceeded the max allowed for by the warranty and that the car was no longer eligible for the warranty. Basically, the warranty was invalid when she purchased it and the salesperson put the wrong mileage on the paperwork so it would look like it was valid. Client has contacted the seller but has not gotten any response. She would not have purchased the vehicle if she thought it was not covered under the warranty. Client would like the seller to pay for the vehicle to be fixed or she would like her money back.
For disaster relief cases, please contact Jason Susalla directly – jsusalla [at] bals.org.
Case #21-xxx1947 (Dissolution of Marriage – Hillsborough)
Our client has been served with a Dissolution of Marriage in which the spouse is requesting an unequal distribution of assets, and attempting to deprive the client of a fair divorce resolution. The opposing party is represented, and the client is in dire need of assistance in proceeding with the dissolution. The client is not able to afford an attorney and unable to navigate the proceeding pro se. The client has filed a pro se answer to avoid a default, but has not yet filed a formal answer and counter petition. The client needs review of marital assets, review and assistance with pleadings, and representation in a dissolution of marriage proceeding. A case management conference is scheduled for August 3, 2021.
Case #21-xxx4101 (Insurance Claim / Policy Review – Hillsborough)
Our client's home suffered damage due to hurricane Irma - severe roof damage that remains today. Shortly after the storm the client filed a claim with the active insurance policy, but was denied coverage because the policy was in his mother's, the previous owner's, name. The client has since secured a new policy in his name and made another attempt to file a claim, but was told that he was beyond the deadline for a claim and again denied. The client now needs legal assistance to determine whether he has a viable insurance claim through his policy coverage. The client needs review of his insurance policy, and consultation on his rights as a policyholder - and if practical, guidance on filing another claim to seek home repairs.
Case #21-xxx1336 (Probate Issue – Pinellas)
Our client's home was damaged during hurricane Eta, to the point where the property was boarded up due to code violations. Unable to live elsewhere, and forbidden from entering the property, the client was forced to live in his car for several months. The client is attempting to seek assistance for repairs, but has a property ownership concern stemming from a probate proceeding involving his deceased wife. Client is listed as the owner through property records, but a review of the probate documents is necessary to determine if others have a property interest impeding client's ability to seek assistance for property repairs. The client needs review of the probate documents to determine if there is a shared interest in the property. If others share interest in the property, they may be willing to sign over their interest to the client - and the client would benefit from consultation and guidance on this matter.
Case #19-xxx8305 (Modifying Last Will – Hillsborough)
Our client secured a will in approximately 2006. Since this time, the client has had changed circumstances and desires to modify the terms of his will. Work is expected to be remote.
Still have questions?
If you live or have a case in Hillsborough, Manatee, Pasco, Pinellas or Sarasota counties, we may be able to help.