Through the below pro bono opportunities, you can provide critically needed legal services to individuals and families in need in the Tenth Judicial Circuit. We hope you will get involved and also help spread the word!
Self-Represented Litigant Help Desk
Volunteers at the Self-Represented Litigant Help Desk meet with self-represented litigants for 30-minute appointments to help them understand and navigate the legal process, fill out forms and answer questions. Two-hour volunteer shifts are currently available at the Peoria and Tazewell County Courthouses. Paralegals and law students are also needed, in addition to attorneys, to do intake.
“It is so great to see people getting help and assistance with their legal issues. In both cases, I witnessed the clients coming in with little to no hope for their situation and both leaving with so much more confidence. They were all so very thankful for the service!” – Help Desk Volunteer
Tenth Judicial Circuit Conflict of Interest Pro Bono Referral Panel
The Conflict of Interest Pro Bono Referral Panel provides a referral source for Prairie State Legal Services to send potential clients who have been denied service due to a conflict of interest. A potential client is only eligible for referral to the program if they have been denied services by a participating legal aid agency due to a conflict and the potential client has been referred to the program by Prairie State. Only civil legal matters that are not fee generating are eligible for possible placement through this program. To be eligible for referral to a pro bono attorney through this program, a prospective client must be at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines.
Cases are currently being placed in Marshall, Peoria, Stark and Tazewell Counties.
Illinois Armed Forces Legal Assistance Network
Illinois Armed Forces Legal Aid Network (IL-AFLAN) provides civil legal services across Illinois to veterans, active duty military and their spouses and dependents. As an IL-AFLAN member, PILI refers pro bono matters to volunteer attorneys in the 101 counties outside of Cook County.
Many opportunities exist for volunteers to assist Prairie State clients through direct representation, counsel and advice, document preparation, and clinic settings. Due to limited resources, Prairie State attorneys cannot assist everyone who is eligible for their services, so they rely on volunteer attorneys to help many of their clients who are in need of legal assistance.
For more information or to volunteer, contact Myraida Melendez by email or by phone at at 309-674-9831.
SEALING & EXPUNGEMENT CLINICS
Prairie State Legal Services’ monthly sealing and expungement clinics are an opportunity for individuals to receive free legal consultations on their options for criminal records relief. Volunteer attorneys are needed to staff the clinics and meet with clients. No prep work is required and the attorney’s role is limited to advising the client on their criminal record and reviewing the pro se Request to Seal/Expunge with the client. Each clinic runs from approximately 9:00 to 11:30 a.m. at the Chase building in downtown Peoria.
Learn more about the Tenth Judicial Circuit Pro Bono Committee »