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Supreme Court highlights need for attorney volunteers, declares Oct. 21-27 Ky. Pro Bono Week


The Supreme Court wants to thank Kentucky attorneys who donate their time and expertise by proclaiming Oct. 21-27 as Kentucky Pro Bono Week.

“One of the hallmarks of legal professionalism is a commitment to public service,” said Chief Justice of Kentucky John D. Minton Jr. “Although Kentucky doesn’t have a pro bono requirement, Rule 6.1 of the Rules of Professional Conduct encourages all lawyers to voluntarily render public interest legal service. The lawyers who donate their time to help those who can’t afford legal counsel set an important example for our profession.”

The American Bar Association is observing the 10th anniversary of the National Celebration of Pro Bono, an annual recognition of attorneys who provide high-quality legal services at no cost to low-income individuals.

“Kentucky citizens must be able to count on equal justice under the law,” said Supreme Court Justice Michelle M. Keller, chair of the Kentucky Access to Justice Commission. “The Supreme Court appreciates the attorneys who volunteer more than 120,000 pro bono hours every year to help those of limited means with civil cases that include domestic relations, domestic violence, veterans benefits, evictions, elder abuse and more.

“In spite of that, Kentucky is facing a crisis of unmet need for legal representation for civil legal aid. The Supreme Court wants to educate the public about how important it is for Kentucky lawyers to volunteer their services to those in need.”

Attorneys who are interested in volunteering with Kentucky’s four civil legal aid programs can contact:

•AppalReD, serves Eastern and Southcentral Kentucky: Mary Going at maryg@ardfky.org
•Kentucky Legal Aid, serves Southcentral and Western Kentucky: Sarah Capps Hayes at SHayes@klaid.org
•Legal Aid of the Bluegrass, serves North and Northeastern Kentucky: Josh Fain at jfain@lablaw.org
•Legal Aid Society, serves Jefferson and surrounding counties: Tracey Taylor at ttaylor@laslou.org

National Celebration of Pro Bono
In 1999, the American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on Pro Bono and Public Service announced its plan for an annual celebration to highlight the differences lawyers make in their communities, to recruit and train more pro bono volunteers, and to acknowledge those partnerships that form the basis for many of the private bar’s most successful pro bono efforts. The first National Pro Bono Week in 2009 recognized the important contributions of pro bono lawyers in providing access to justice for those living on the social margins.

From Supreme Court of Kentucky


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