Task Force Urges Increasing Annual Pro Bono to 50 Hours

, New York Law Journal


The Task Force to Expand Access to Civil Legal Services, appointed by Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman, issued a report last week that said while the current level of commitment to pro bono is "encouraging," the demand remains as acute as ever, especially in light of continuing economic uncertainty and, more recently, Hurricane Sandy.

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What's being said

  • Chris

    Whether pro bono is required or not in all states, having the discussion raises awareness among all lawyers – and society – of both the dire need for pro bono and the fact that lawyers throughout the country are contributing without being required to do so. It is also encouraging that the legal and medical professions are combining their free services efforts because they realize unmet legal and medical needs often have an overlapping cause-effect relationship in low-income populations. Dr. Claire Pomeroy, the dean of the medical school at UC Davis, lists a few ideas about how medical and law schools can link their students together in cross-profession programs. http://www.beckershospitalreview.com/hospital-management-administration/fixing-americas-health-and-legal-services-safety-net.html


    Let's take a moderate hourly rate for a New York lawyer--$300 per. Fifty hours at this rate equals a donation of $15,000.00. How about John L taking a fifteen thousand dollar pay cut? How about all of the attorneys that are subject to the "generosity" of these ivory tower types--who obviously aren't doing small firm or solo practice--getting together and deciding that proponents of mandatory pro bono work their jobs for nothing. It has been my experience, and I am sure others have had similar experience that pro bono work is seldom to never appreciated by the recipients. If an attorney wants to donate time, fine. But to impose quasi mandatory or mandatory pro bono requirements? Lincoln freed the slaves already people.

  • LiveFreeOrDie

    It's pretty easy to see where this is headed. Haven't these people heard of the 13th Amendment?

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