Pro Bono Legal Assistance
Public Interest legal organizations in the Philadelphia area provide our students with outstanding opportunities to learn the practice of law and to help improve the lives of clients. Lawyers in these organizations have developed expertise in many fields of law, and they may be able to provide their services for free for low fees. If you are seeking legal help, here is a list of organizations that provide free or low cost legal services.
We are providing this list merely for your information. We strive to keep this information up to date, but due to the rapidly changing nature of the law, we cannot guarantee that information here is accurate. It is definitely not comprehensive; there are other resources and organizations that may be able to help you.
We are not responsible for any information or advice you receive through resources you find on this website. By providing these resources, we are not giving you legal advice. We will not, and we cannot, establish an attorney-client relationship with you.
We hope you find the information on this website useful. Thank you for visiting!
General Legal Assistance
If you would like legal advice or further information from organizations in the Philadelphia area, you can try
- finding a private attorney through the Philadelphia Bar Association’s Referral System;
- seeking free legal advice from Community Legal Services, Philadelphia Legal Assistance, and other local organizations. Many organizations have limitations on who they can represent, such as income limits.
In Pennsylvania, the Pennsylvania Bar Association provides referral information on its website.
Landlord Tenant Disputes
Community Legal Services represents low-income tenants facing eviction in Municipal Court. If you are a tenant facing eviction or seeking advice about a dispute with your landlord, you can reach the CLS phone intake at 215.981.3700, Monday through Friday, 9am to 4:30pm.
Custody and Child Support
The attorneys in the Family Law Unit of Philadelphia Legal Assistance are experienced with a wide range of family law issues. If you would like assistance with child support disputes, judicial bypass orders, or other family law issues, you may contact Philadelphia Legal Assistance’s Family Law Intake Line at 215.981.3838 on Monday, Wednesday, or Friday between the hours of 10:00am to 12:00pm.
The Employment Advocacy Project provides non-legal assistance to individuals seeking unemployment compensation. The students working with EAP can assist applicants for unemployment compensation prepare for hearings to appeal a denial of benefits, and they can provide assistance and referrals for further appeals. You can reach EAP’s intake phone line at (215) 746-1457 .
Philadelphia Legal Assistance also provides assistance for unemployment compensation claims. Their Public Benefits Hotline is 215.227.6485.
Lawyers and other volunteers at Homeless Advocacy Project clinics assist individuals who are homeless or are housing insecure with a variety of legal issues. Students can help individuals apply for various public benefits, deal with landlord-tenant disputes, and other issues. You can seek help from the Homeless Advocacy Project during clinic hours.
Food Stamps Assistance
The Guild Food Stamp Clinic is a collaboration between Penn Law students and Philadelphia Legal Assistance. The clinic assists individuals applying for food stamps or appealing decisions by the County Assistance Office. If you would like to speak to the clinic about getting help, you can reach them at firstname.lastname@example.org or 215-523-9501. Philadelphia Legal Assistance’s Welfare Law Line is 215.227.6485. You can also find information about Philadelphia Legal Assistance’s Public Benefits Unit.
Criminal Record Expungement
The Philadelphia Criminal Record Expungement Project helps individuals expunge eligible information from their criminal records. Penn Law students volunteer at clinics to interview potential clients, and more experienced students argue expungement petitions in state court. If you would like advice about expunging criminal records, you can visit their website at http://plsephilly.org/ for more information and for the dates of upcoming clinics. Community Legal Services also provides criminal records expungement services, and you can find more information about their expungement project here.