Last updated: November 5, 2013
If you need legal assistance in Ann Arbor, but don’t have the means to hire a private attorney, you’ve come to the right place. Check out this list of legal service providers we’ve compiled to see whether one might be able to help you. Whether you need help with a family law matter, want to appeal an unemployment insurance denial, think you’ve experienced housing discrimination, or have some other problem, hopefully these resources can help you find the assistance you need f at a price you can afford.
Note: Legal Services of South Central Michigan (LSSCM) “provides free civil legal assistance to low income persons with emphasis on homelessness prevention, domestic violence prevention, assisting in accessing health care, food, and needs-based income programs.” Areas of law LSSCM can provide assistance in include Family, Housing, Public Benefits, Consumer Matters, Health Care and Senior. They do not handle any criminal matters. Income eligibility is generally limited to those making 200% or less of the federal poverty level, although there are some exceptions. LSSCM is also affiliated with the Michigan Legal Help website which provides self-help tools, court information, a legal directory and more.
Note: The Michigan Unemployment Insurance Project (MiUI) provides free advice and assistance in Unemployment Insurance cases. Law students under the supervision of experienced attorneys provide the advice and advocacy and can offer representation at administrative hearings, the Michigan Compensation Appellate Commission, the Circuit Court and the Michigan Court of Appeals. MiUI also has a helpful informational pamphlet about unemployment rights, eligibility and the appeal process.
Note: In this clinic, law students under the supervision of instructors, provide assistance with criminal misdemeanor matters as well as a vast array of civil issues (e.g. landlord/tenant, public benefits, political asylum, sexual harassment, etc.). The clinic only accepts new cases during the school year (September through April). You may wish to refer to these Frequently Asked Questions and/or these examples of cases handled by the clinic for more information.
Note: In this clinic, law students under the supervision of instructors, provide assistance to low-income individuals with tax issues. In order to qualify, the amount in dispute cannot exceed $50,000 per tax year and your household income must be 250% or less of the federal poverty guidelines. The first step in the application process is completion of this form. After receipt of this form the clinic will contact you to schedule a consultation. Following the consultation you will be advised whether the clinic will accept your case.
Note: This organization investigates complaints of housing discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, familial status, disability, age or marital status. If you feel you have been the victim of such discrimination, you may report this incident here. You will then be contacted by an FHC staff member who will obtain additional information. To help you assess whether your experience was discriminatory, you may wish to refer to these common signs of housing discrimination and the Fair Housing Law.
Note: The Lawyer Referral and Information Service (LRIS) can assist you by connecting you with an attorney for a consultation of up to 30 minutes for $30. Fees for additional consultations and/or representation will be negotiated between you and the attorney directly. To get a referral, call 746-996-3229 for a brief confidential discussion with an LRIS staff member regarding your problem. He or she will then give you the name and contact information of an appropriate participating attorney. If you have a family law issue, you may be interested Family Law Modest Means Program in which participating attorneys have agreed to work at a rate of no more than $75/hour. To apply, read these instructions and fill out the application.
P.O. Box 8645
Note: If you have been charged with a crime and cannot afford a private defense attorney, contact the public defender’s office to see whether you can qualify for their services.
Note: Although they do not act as attorneys, the staff members at SafeHouse Center’s Legal Advocacy Program are legally trained and provide domestic violence and sexual assault survivors assistance and support. Some of the services they provide include: explaining the legal process, filing for crime victim’s compensation, preparing applications for protective orders, preparing victim impact statements, and more. In addition, their website includes legal forms and manuals that you may find useful.