50 years of service at Wisconsin Judicare

“I felt hopeless until they stepped in.” “This service kept me from becoming homeless and bankrupt.” By Beth Richlen, Development Director, Wisconsin Judicare For 50 years, Wisconsin Judicare has provided legal services to individuals like these in northern Wisconsin. From Stevens Point to Superior, from Hudson to Marinette, and everywhere in between, the low-income residentsContinue Reading

Supreme Court action on access to justice

On April 13, the Wisconsin Supreme Court voted unanimously to adopt a change proposed by the Access to Justice Commission that will result in a new source of funds for civil legal aid to the indigent in Wisconsin. The court acted following a public hearing on Petition 15-06, which was filed by the Access to JusticeContinue ReadingContinue Reading

Comments sought on access to justice rule petitions

The Wisconsin Supreme Court is seeking comment on two pending rule petitions that support access to justice efforts in Wisconsin. The Access to Justice Commission filed Petition 15-06 seeking a rule change that would allocate 50% of unclaimed class action awards to support civil legal services to low income persons (aka cy pres). The State Bar of Wisconsin filedContinue Reading

Pro bono spotlight – Brown County free legal clinic

On the first Wednesday of every month, a group of volunteer lawyers meet at Casa ALBA Melanie in Green Bay to offer free legal advice to anyone who comes in. “We answer legal questions and direct people to agencies, attorneys or other resources that can assist them,” said Attorney Robert R. Gagan. Gagan is aContinue Reading

An alternative for disputes in Winnebago County

“Despite 25 years of existence, we are still a well-kept secret,” said Michael Rust, Executive Director of the Winnebago Conflict Resolution Center, Inc. (WCRC) in Oshkosh. A pioneer in the area of alternative dispute resolution, the WCRC is a nonprofit organization providing mediation services throughout Wisconsin, free mediation services to residents of Winnebago County, andContinue Reading

Taking a holistic approach to ending domestic violence

Each year Domestic Abuse Intervention Services (DAIS) serves thousands of women, children and men through their life-changing programs. These individuals come from all facets of our community — they are our neighbors, coworkers, family and friends. DAIS provides hope and help through its staff and volunteers. When someone reaches out to DAIS, they are connectedContinue ReadingContinue Reading

More help for victims in Winnebago County

Thanks to a $100,000 subgrant of federal STOP grant funds awarded by the Director of State Courts Office, Christine Ann Domestic Abuse Services in Oshkosh has begun funding legal representation for victims of domestic violence who need representation in family law matters. The program was developed collaboratively by the Access to Justice Commission, Christine Ann Center,Continue Reading

Commission launches new online legal advice website

The Wisconsin Access to Justice Commission is pleased to announce the launch of Wisconsin Legal Advice Online (WLAO), a free online service that allows eligible Wisconsin residents to post legal questions for response by volunteer Wisconsin lawyers. Created by the Commission and sponsored by the State Bar’s pro bono program, WLAO is one way to make brief legalContinue ReadingContinue Reading

2015 Pro Bono Honor Society certifications

With the arrival of fall, it’s time again to look back and celebrate what has been accomplished in one of the Access to Justice Commission’s priority areas: expanding and recognizing pro bono service by Wisconsin lawyers. The Wisconsin Pro Bono Honor Society is the Commission’s way of honoring lawyers who have made an outstanding contribution of atContinue ReadingContinue Reading

Proposed rule changes would expand access to justice

The search for new ways to address the chronic shortage of resources for civil legal aid in Wisconsin has taken on a MacGyveresque feel – sans the Swiss Army knife and duct tape. The Commission and others are always on the lookout for new ways to use old tools to come up with life-impacting solutions. Two of them arrivedContinue Reading