"Joe Jones" (not his real name) was driving home one evening and stopped by the police for a traffic violation. Although this was his first ticket, he was arrested and taken to jail for a string of past violations he did not understand. He could not afford to hire a lawyer but was appointed a Legal Aid lawyer at court, who discovered that his name and date of birth were identical to someone associated with the old charges. It was a case of mistaken identity, and the charges were immediately dismissed. If you were arrested and charged with a crime, wouldn't you want to be defended, even if you could not afford it?
"Baby Angela's" parents loved her but had all sorts of problems, including unemployment and substance abuse issues. She was found in a drawer in a motel room by the motel's housekeeper, with no parents in sight. Child protective workers were called, and she was placed with relatives until her parents could get help for themselves and prove to the court that they were able to care for her properly. "Baby Angela" had a lawyer appointed as a guardian ad litem who visited her in her relatives' home, monitored her care, and advised the court regarding her custody options. If children you know were living under these circumstances, wouldn't you want them to have a voice in a court hearing that would determine their future, someone who would stand up for them and speak for their best interests?
These are only two examples in which the American justice system says you have a right to an effective lawyer, appointed by the court at no expense to yourself. That's what Legal Aid provides to Jefferson County children and adults who lack the ability to secure a lawyer for themselves.
Our 20 full-time lawyers do this work every day. They could have chosen more financially rewarding law practices, but instead they are fulfilled by helping children and poor people through the difficulties of the court system and giving them hope for the future.
Your support of the Legal Aid Society will add to our ability to help our clients who are facing substantial loss of their legal rights and have nowhere else to turn. Your gift to us says you care about justice for all, not just those who can afford it.
Serving individuals in Birmingham, Tarrant, and Jefferson County courts, all zip codes in Jefferson County: 35005, 35006, 35007, 35062, 35064, 35068, 35071, 35073, 35091, 35094, 35116 , 35117, 35118, 35126, 35130, 35173, 35020, 35021, 35022, 35023, 35071, 35091, 35094, 35111, 35126, 35127, 35173, 35180, 35205, 35206, 35207, 35208, 35209, 35210, 35211, 35212, 35213, 35214, 35215, 35216, 35217, 35221, 35222, 35223, 35226, 35234, 35243, 35244