June 2015 Pro Bono Newsletter

Dear Barristers,

Greetings from your Pro Bono Committee!  This is your June 2015 Pro Bono Newsletter.  We hope that you will take the opportunity to review the following important charitable opportunities, and even better, participate in one or more of them.

BHBA BARRISTERS–BARRISTERS MONTHLY FREE LEGAL CLINIC

Volunteer at our very own BHBA Monthly Free Legal Clinic at Roxbury Park in Beverly Hills, where volunteer attorneys answer legal questions presented by the public!  Join us Saturday, July 11th, from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.  If you are interested in volunteering, or want more information, please feel free to contact co-chairs Will Wenzel or Danielle E. Grabois.

LA LAW LIBRARY / SOCAL PRO BONO MANAGERS

SoCal Pro Bono Managers and the LA Law Library presents “How Pro Bono Cases Can Build Strong Legal Skills”. This event will be held on June 10, 2015 from 12:15 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. at the Los Angeles Law Library at 301 W. 1st Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012.  Registration is free. To reserve your spot, please contact Pamela Marx.

LEGAL AID FOUNDATION OF LOS ANGELES

For 80 years, the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles (LAFLA) has been providing civil legal services to low-income residents of Los Angeles County.  LAFLA would love for you to participate in one or more of their upcoming pro bono projects to help domestic violence victims, as well as members of the Asian and Pacific Islander communities.  For more information, or to volunteer for one of the listed opportunities, please contact LAFLA’s Pro Bono Director, Phong Wong.

Asian and Pacific Islander (API) Community Outreach Unit

LAFLA is looking for attorneys to conduct client interviews, provide counsel and advice, draft court pleadings, conduct legal research and writing, attend hearings and trials, as well as develop, conduct, and coordinate educational materials and outreach. Bilingual attorneys, especially those who speak Asian languages are highly encouraged to apply. The Unit operates out of the West Office located at 1102 Crenshaw Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90019, and is open Monday through Friday 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Santa Monica Domestic Violence Clinic

LAFLA needs attorneys and law students to volunteer at their Domestic Violence Clinic in the Santa Monica courthouse, which is held every weekend morning. Volunteers at the DV clinic conduct client interviews, provide counsel and advice under supervision, draft domestic violence restraining order applications and provide guidance and support to people trying to survive and endure one of the most difficult times in their lives.

BET TZEDEK LEGAL SERVICES

Bet Tzedek provides aid to all eligible residents throughout Los Angeles County who are in need of legal assistance, regardless of racial, religious, or ethnic background.  Bet Tzedek’s pioneering projects combine direct legal representation with outreach, education, and legislative advocacy, resulting in equal access to justice for over 15,000 low-income Angelinos last year alone.  For more information, or to volunteer for one of the listed opportunities, please contact Bet Tzedek’s Pro Bono Director, Diego Cartagena.

Pro Bono Placement — Real Property and Probate

Bet Tzedek is seeking an attorney to serve as pro bono counsel to help a client gain title to property conveyed to him in 1985.  The matter may involve a probate proceeding.  You can find information on the matter by clicking HERE.

Pro Bono Placement — Estate Planning

Bet Tzedek is seeking an attorney with some estate planning experience to draft an estate plan for a 69-year-old woman who is an Israeli immigrant.  You can find information on the matter by clicking HERE.

Pro Bono Placement — Estate Planning

Bet Tzedek is seeking an attorney with some estate planning experience to draft a will and healthcare directive for a 68-year-old woman with limited assets.  You can find information on the matter by clicking HERE.

PUBLIC COUNSEL

As many of you know, the BHBA was a founder of Public Counsel, which is the largest pro bono law firm in the nation, and helps more than 30,000 people every year through the power of law.  Public Counsel’s activities are far-ranging, and impact a wide array of people who live at or below the poverty line.  Volunteer lawyers, law students, and legal professionals have the opportunity to work on a variety of different projects.  For more information on Public Counsel, please contact their Pro Bono Director David Daniels at (213) 385-2977 x101

Pro Bono Placement — Limited Scope / Research Opportunity

For years, Public Counsel has been seeking pro bono attorneys to help victims of the Zepeda brothers.  Now incarcerated, the Zepedas stole title to hundreds of homes.  The District Attorney entered a stipulation and order, by which each of the fraudulent deeds is voided.  Public Counsel seeks pro bono assistance to draft a self-help packet that we can distribute to the homeowners whose title is still in David Zepeda’s name.  If you would like, you may also use your research to do a “trial run” with one or two of our current clients who have this problem.  Contact Adelaide Anderson for more information.

Pro Bono Placement — Gym Forces Out Members Who Are Paying Lower Rates

Both Client and his father are longtime members of a national-name gym.  They paid approximately $100 a year for membership at the gym, which is located in an up-and-coming neighborhood.  A few years ago, Gym told Client’s father that he no longer was welcome at the facility, and it terminated his membership.  Now the same thing has happened to Client.  Both times, Gym gave reasons for terminating the membership that appear to be false.  Both times, Gym then said the person could rejoin, but only at a much higher rate. Contact Adelaide Anderson for more information.

Pro Bono Placement — Small Business Owner’s Contractor Will Not Uphold Warranty

Client is a small business owner.  Since Client has rented the storefront from landlord, Client has had trouble with a leaky roof.  Client’s landlord claims he is not responsible for fixing it.  Frustrated with water-damaged goods, Client hired a contractor who provided a one year guarantee for the roof repair.  After making the repair, the roof starting leaking again.  Contractor will not respond to Client’s calls to uphold the warranty.  Contact Natalie Klasky for more information.

 

We hope you find this newsletter valuable, and look forward to the Barristers taking active roles in these incredible opportunities!

Very truly yours,

Elizabeth Hall, Pro bono Committee Co-Chair,

Jack J. McMorrow, Pro bono Committee Member, and

Autumn Ronda, Pro bono Committee Co-Chair and Immediate Past Barristers President

 

SaMoShel Thanksgiving

A lot of Barristers showed their support at November’s SaMoShel, preparing and serving a meal for as many as 60 shelter residents, proving there can never be too many cooks in THIS kitchen!

The residents of the Santa Monica Shelter (SaMoShel) have experienced difficulties that caused them to lose everything. SaMoShel provides food, a bed, work-life skills and helps people find jobs and housing to get them back on their feet. Come join the Barristers at 505 Olympic Blvd in Santa Monica on December 13 (the second Saturday of the month) and make a real difference! You’ll be glad you did!

For questions or more information, feel free to leave a comment below or on Facebook.

The Barristers Monthly Samoshel Homeless Project is a community service program of the Beverly Hills Bar Association, 9420 Wilshire Blvd, 2nd Floor, Beverly Hills, CA 90212.

Barristers Holiday Community Outreach Project

presents

Grant a wish for a boy at Hathaway-Sycamores: For over 110 years, Hathaway-Sycamores Child and Family Services has provided a loving home and compassionate care for abused and neglected children in Los Angeles County.  Send gifts to the boys at Hathaway-Sycamores through our Amazon Wish List!

The holiday season is one of the most exciting times of the year for children, but for children who are abused and neglected, and living in out-of-home care, it can be a very sad, difficult time.  This holiday season, the BHBA Barristers is joining forces with Hathaway-Sycamores to fulfill the special wishes of the thirty-nine boys, ages 11-18, who are currently residing in their group home.

Help us to support Hathaway-Sycamores, and ensure that the boys in their care greet the holidays with joy and anticipation.

With great care we have discovered the individual holiday wish of each boy living in the group home.  For example, Robert, age 14, expressed that he wants a Marvel Legos set, and Sean, age 17, wants a New England Patriots blanket.  We have already done the legwork by locating the products that most closely matched the boys’ wishes (factoring pricing and shipping options). We then created an Amazon online wish list where you can purchase these items (which average $35), and have them shipped directly to Hathaway-Sycamores! All you need to do to fulfill a holiday wish for a deserving child is browse the Amazon Wish List, select a child, click to purchase their special gift, pay, and have it sent directly to the home! For detailed instructions see the top of the Amazon Wish List, or click here.

Your support will ensure a brighter season for the boys living at Hathaway-Sycamores, who, with your help, will receive gifts they might not otherwise enjoy during this joyful season.

Please contact one of us at the following email addresses if you have any questions: Autumn Ronda ar@vrmlaw.com and Rachel Balchum Rachel.Balchum@gmail.com

More about Hathaway-Sycamores: Hathaway-Sycamores (Federal Tax I.D. #95-1691005) is a not-for-profit agency providing an array of services including residential treatment, therapy, special education, foster care, and in-home family support for emotionally disturbed children and their families. They are one of the largest private children’s mental health and welfare agencies in Los Angeles County, providing care and treatment of over 7,000 children and families a year. For more information visit their website at http://www.hathaway-sycamores.org/.

Celebrate Pro Bono Week Volunteer for the Lawyers in the Library Clinic

The Barristers are proud to announce the official sponsorship of the L.A. Law Library's Lawyers in the Library event to be held in conjunction with the Library's annual Pro Bono Week.

Lawyers in the Library offers complimentary 20 – 30 minute consultations to members of the public who are in need of legal advice, and is held at the L.A. Law Library on a monthly basis. The special Pro Bono Week edition of the clinic will run from 12:00 to 4:00 p.m. on Saturday, October 25, 2014.

The BHBA has pledged to serve the 100+ members of the public attending the clinic, so we need YOU to volunteer for this fantastic opportunity to give back!

Each volunteer only needs to commit to a one-hour time slot on Saturday, October 25th between 12:00 and 4:00 p.m. (though you are able to volunteer for the entire four-hour clinic, or any portion thereof, if you so desire).

For more information about the clinic and to sign-up, please visit www.bhba.org/lawyersinthelibrary.

Volunteers don't necessarily have the time; they just have the heart.
– Author Unknown

Barristers Backpack Drive Supporting the Children’s Law Center

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Drop-off backpacks and school supplies at the Bar until 8/22!

It is back to school time and the Barristers Pro Bono Committee is holding a Backpack Drive to benefit the Children's Law Center of California (CLC)!  

Abused and neglected children in foster care move from one placement to another an average of four times. Many of these children do not have any bags to carry their textbooks to and from school, and are forced to carry their belongings in tattered plastic bags.  Make a difference in the life of one of these foster children with a simple donation. 

BHBA members can drop off new backpacks and school supplies such as pens, pencils, crayons and notebooks to the BHBA headquarters for donation to CLC, any time prior to August 22, 2014 at 5:00 p.m. If you plan to be at the Bar for a program or meeting, that is the perfect opportunity to bring in a donation! 

Children's Law Center of California is a 501(C)(3) non-profit organization. For more information please visit www.clccal.org. If you would like a receipt for your backpack donation, please include your name, address and the value of your donation along with your backpack. 

For more information or if you have any questions, please feel free to email Barristers Pro Bono Committee co-chairs Rachel Balchum, Elizabeth Hall or Autumn Ronda.

Summer Mixer at Trader Vic’s

Summer Time @Trader Vics

Join the Beverly Hills Bar Association's Personal Injury Section as we throw a party – why? Because it's summer!

For our first annual Summer Mixer, we will be eating, drinking, and mingling poolside at Trader Vic's at the Beverly Hilton on Thursday, June 26 from 6-8pm.

Hors d'ouevres and dessert will be passed (compliments of Carpenter, Zuckerman & Rowley, LLP and Shapiro Settlement Solutions). There will also be a hosted bar serving delicious and creative cocktails, courtesy of Max Nelson, Director, Residential Division of The Agency.

Plaintiff lawyers, defense lawyers – all are welcome!

Program Chair: Kristen Marquis, Esq., of WebPresence, Esq.
Section Chair: Barry A. Drucker, Esq.
Section Vice Chairman: Jonathan S. Dennis, Esq.

BHBA Barristers Free Legal Clinic! Sat, June 7th, 10am-Noon!

The Barristers are hosting their Monthly Free Legal Clinic this Saturday, June 7th, 2014 at La Cienega Park in Beverly Hills. This is a fun opportunity to serve the community and meet your BHBA colleagues!
 
Barrister Leroy Williams will be leading our clinic. Let's get a good number of volunteers there to help Leroy help our community!
 
As always, we operate as a question and answer clinic. People come with a variety of questions and our volunteer attorneys do their best to provide basic answers.
 
The clinic begins at 10 am and finishes at about 12 noon, depending on the number of people who attend. If you are a new volunteer, come and check us out! We don't require a commitment to attend any particular number of sessions and we will pair you with an experienced volunteer attorney who will show you the ropes.
 
Also, remember that next month on Saturday, July 12, the clinic will again return to Roxbury Park in Beverly Hills! We changed the date due to the 4th of July holiday but are moving back to our previous and now, newly remodeled location!
 
If you are interested in volunteering or have any questions please feel free to contact co-chairs Brian Smith (bsmith493@sbcglobal.net), Anton Labrentz (anton@MrDuiLa.com) or Wil Wenzel (wsw@wswlegal.com).
 
The Barristers Monthly Free Legal Clinic is a community service program of the Beverly Hills Bar Association, 9420 Wilshire Blvd, 2nd Floor, Beverly Hills, CA 90212.

Get the most out of your BHBA Membership!

Do you want to learn:

How you can participate in a Section and its executive committee – and why?
How you can participate in a bar committee – and why?
How you can get to know the members, directors, officers and chairs of the bar – and why?
How you can cultivate sources of referrals and network for "career enhancement"?
How to get the most from your member benefit providers?
How you can maximize your membership?

 

Come to Bar Camp on Tuesday, May 20!  More details here: http://www.bhbaweb.com/barristers/ai1ec_event/bar-camp/

 

4/27: The 26th Annual VINTAGE BOUQUET™ is THIS SUNDAY!

Have you purchased your tickets yet? It promises to be a beautiful afternoon filled with all the best food, beverages, and company you could ask for. And did I mention there will be auctions? Register today at http://www.VintageBouquet.com!

Flyer 2014

Barristers/Bet Tzedek Co-Hosted Wage and Hour FREE MCLE

Bet Tzedek’s Employment Rights Project is fighting the good fight against injustice in Los Angeles’ low-wage economy. Studies suggest that up to 700,000 people work in Los Angeles’ underground and informal economies, which are filled with low-wage workers – and rife with employment abuse. On April 29, at 6 p.m. at the BHBA offices, the Barristers will co-host a FREE MCLE providing the training to participate in Bet Tzedek's Employment Rights Project, which advocates on behalf of these workers, including garment workers, day laborers, and janitors, to rectify labor law abuse.

The training will prepare attorney volunteers to represent clients on a wage and hour matter, which requires drafting a trial brief and arguing the case at an administrative hearing where the rules of evidence do not apply. The MCLE is offered complimentary to attorneys who commit to taking on a pro bono wage and hour matter through the Employment Rights Project. To sign up for the program please click here!

Barristers Workshop Bet Tzedek April 29 2014 (1)_001