According to an article in the Star-Telegram, over two-thirds of Americans surveyed by the American Bar Association said they would support increased federal funding for poor people needing legal assistance. Currently there is legislation making its way through Congress to increase legal aid funding for the poor.
The article said:
Legislation introduced in March by Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, would nearly double the budget for Legal Services, which Congress created 35 years ago, and lift restrictions on the kinds of cases legal aid lawyers can file.
Currently, The Legal Services Corp., a nonprofit corporation that is funded by Congress, distributes grants to legal aid groups in all 50 states who help poor people involved in civil cases including but not limited to, housing foreclosures , divorce and child custody issues. These grants are sorely needed especially as the number of poor rise with mounting job losses and foreclosures. But what would probably help many poor people even more is if they were given “legal aid vouchers” that they could use with the attorney of their choice.
Because many of these “low-income” legal aid groups are simply overwhelmed by the sheer volume of poor needing help, especially with foreclosure issues, many debtors are finding that their time sensitive issues are not being handled quickly enough. In the case of foreclosures, a debtor must move very quickly to save their home from foreclosure. If you are low-income and facing foreclosure, speak with a bankruptcy attorney before you stand in line at the legal aid office. Once again, foreclosure is a very time sensitive issue and must be handled quickly, a qualified bankruptcy attorney can speak with you about cost and time issues before you make your decision about how you want to handle a pending foreclosure.