Lawmaker Says It's Time For Pro Bono Lawyers In Civil Cases


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(Sacramento, CA)
Friday, March 6, 2009

You’ve heard of public defenders in criminal courts, but what about for civil cases? 
 
A state lawmaker is introducing legislation that would provide free access to lawyers for low income people involved in civil complaints.
 
Democratic Assemblyman Mike Feuer (fewer) of Los Angeles says his bill would help the elderly or disabled in housing disputes… 
  
“There is an enormous disparity between winning when you are in a courtroom on an eviction hearing.  If you have a lawyer you are much more likely to win…many times more likely to win than when you don’t and what happens when they lose?  They could become homeless.”
 
 
Feuer says civil lawyers would be paid through an additional
ten-dollar fee when a party wins a case.
 
Critics fear the program may encourage people to file frivolous lawsuits.
 
The bill gets its first hearing in the Assembly Committee on Judiciary next month.