Monthly Archives: July 2014

New funding for access to justice

Cup Plant

Image: beautifulcataya at Flickr

This summer, thanks to a recent Wisconsin Supreme Court order, the Wisconsin Trust Account Foundation and the Access to Justice Commission will each have a new source of revenue to support their access to justice missions as of July 1, 2014. The funds will be generated by an increased fee that out of state lawyers must pay in order to practice on a temporary basis in a Wisconsin court. The fee for what is called pro hac vice admission was raised from $50 to $250 per application with $100 of the total going to WisTAF and $50 to the Commission. We expect the increased fee to generate approximately $80,000 annually for WisTAF and $40,000 for the Commission.

Petition 13-11, which requested an increase in the pro hac vice fee, was originally filed by the Office of Lawyer Regulation. Supportive comments were filed by WisTAF and the Commission, with both organizations requesting that a portion of any increase be used to fund access to justice efforts in Wisconsin.

Financial support for access to justice in Wisconsin has experienced a precipitous decline since the Legislature’s 2011 decision to remove all funding in the budget for civil legal aid. The availability of additional resources for WisTAF and the Commission will allow both organizations to continue their important mission of expanding equal access to justice for all.

Staff profile – Jason Mishelow at Centro Legal

You could say it started at a homeless shelter. Jason Mishelow was a college student when he volunteered at Legal Action of Wisconsin and was asked to assist residents at a homeless shelter. Thus began a career dedicated to social justice issues and helping those in need. Mishlow received his law degree from Georgetown University Law SchoolContinue ReadingContinue Reading

Pro bono spotlight – Margaret Maroney

By Margaret Maroney I have Fidel Castro to thank for my encore career. His decision in 1980 to allow thousands of Cubans to board boats departing the Port of Mariel for Florida gave me the chance to sample immigration law. At the time, I was an Assistant State Public Defender in the Appellate Division. TheContinue ReadingContinue Reading

Provider spotlight – Legal Services for Immigrants at Catholic Charities of Milwaukee

By Barbara Graham Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee created its Legal Services for Immigrants (LSI) program to provide legal services and outreach for the marginalized and vulnerable undocumented immigrants who live within the Archdiocese. Three staff attorneys and two paralegals maintain a caseload of 2,000-3,000 clients. Our staff are bilingual in Spanish and English. LSIContinue ReadingContinue Reading

Welcome Robyn Thibado to the Commission

We are pleased to announce that Governor Scott Walker has appointed Robyn Thibado to the Wisconsin Access to Justice Commission. Robyn is the Associate Director for West Central Wisconsin Community Action Agency, Inc. serving Barron, Chippewa, Dunn, Pepin, Pierce, Polk and St. Croix counties. In addition to the challenges that she sees firsthand every day, Robyn also heard testimony from community members,Continue Reading