NYLAG was founded in 1990 on the premise that low-income individuals can improve their lives significantly if they are given access to the justice system. Through the provision of high quality, free civil legal services, NYLAG strives to empower vulnerable New Yorkers, protect their fundamental rights, and help them achieve positive outcomes that alleviate poverty.
Each year, our team provides legal advice and representation to more than 50,000 people. We help victims of domestic violence escape their abusers through orders of protection, divorce, child support and safe custody arrangements. We help cancer patients and others with serious diseases access lifesaving healthcare. We fight for seniors to receive the public benefits and homecare they need to live dignified, independent lives. We prevent foreclosures and evictions by representing homeowners and tenants in court and mediations.
Most of our clients are indigent, or living on the very edge of poverty. But we also help lower middle class and working poor families who cannot afford attorneys. NYLAG has built a reputation for quickly responding to emerging problems, and for creating innovative programming that addresses unmet needs. We provide holistic, collaborative services in partnership with hundreds of community-based organizations, supported by pro bono attorneys and other legal volunteers who every years donate more than 100,000, vastly expanding our ability to serve clients.
Most people understand what health and social services do to help those in need, but they may not realize the role that civil legal services can play in improving the lives of the poor
and near poor. NYLAG’s work empowers clients, and protects fundamental rights. For the people we help, our legal services are the difference between hardship
and solutions… between despair and hope.