Volunteer attorneys will assist pro se litigants remotely through our virtual platform, called Bridging the Divide. Attorneys will provide limited-scope advice and counsel on custody matters. During the two-hour session, volunteer attorneys will help complete court forms and will advise clients on legal standards, relevant pleadings and hearing preparation necessary to successfully navigate child custody litigation.
Yes! With the expectation that most volunteers will not be family law attorneys, LASC/SEOLS has recorded a training on the required legal standards, relevant custody pleadings and best practices. LASC/SEOLS and other pro bono mentors will be available in real time through Bridging the Divide’s Live Chat function and attorneys will be provided with template hearing preparation outlines, a comprehensive nuts and bolts manual, and access to sample forms and pleadings. The Bridging the Divide portal will also allow you access to additional resources to answer questions while meeting with the client.
Yes! Attorneys admitted under corporate counsel status in Ohio may provide pro bono legal services through LASC/SEOLS or any other qualified legal aid or Ohio Supreme Court-approved organization.
Your closest computer! You will meet with clients through the Bridging the Divide platform, accessible from your home or office computer.
You will need to have a webcam and a microphone on your computer to use the video chat feature. No other special equipment or software is required.
The length of each virtual consultation will be two hours or less, depending on the case. LASC/SEOLS will work with each volunteer attorney to schedule volunteer slots that work with your schedule and availability.
Bridging the Divide provides limited-scope advice to pro se litigants. Your engagement with the client ends at the conclusion of your video chat session. You will not be required to provide legal assistance beyond the two-hour remote consultation.
Every attorney will be asked to fill out a brief Attorney Satisfaction Survey after volunteering. LASC/SEOLS is always open to feedback from our volunteers.
By volunteering your time to help a client through Bridging the Divide, you are providing legal assistance to one of the many custody litigants without legal counsel in Ohio. Custody matters involve highly personal and emotional issues, and by volunteering with Bridging the Divide, you are providing critical legal advice and helping litigants be the best self-advocates possible! You will have the opportunity to use your unique set of legal skills to satisfy an unmet need and will also gain legal experience in a new area of law.
Additionally, LASC/SEOLS provides primary malpractice coverage and all attorneys can accrue one hour of Ohio CLE credit for every six hours of volunteering with Bridging the Divide.
If you are interested in volunteering, please fill out our Volunteer Attorney Interest Form or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.