Last updated: November 7, 2013
The legal world can be a confusing place, so enlisting the aid of a trained professional is usually in your best interest. But lawyers are expensive. If you are elderly, disabled, a victim of domestic violence, or earn less than 125% of the federal poverty threshold, you may be eligible for free legal representation from one of Fitchburg’s local legal aid groups. Using any one of these groups is a fantastic way to even the odds in your favor. The keys to selecting a quality legal aid lawyer are to contact a group that specializes in your particular legal issue and to feel comfortable speaking earnestly with the person who will be representing your interests. To make your search easier, we have compiled a list of reliable legal aid groups in and around Fitchburg.
Good to know: Community Legal Aid provides free civil legal services to low-income and elderly individuals in central and western Massachusetts, with a satellite office in Fitchburg. They can help with any civil law issue, but specialize in benefits and unemployment law, elder law, family and juvenile law, housing and homelessness and immigration law. The Fitchburg office is only open on Wednesdays, but their main office in Worcester can assist you on any weekday.
Good to know: The Massachusetts Justice Project offers legal advice, brief services, referrals and a limited amount of full representation to poor people in need of legal assistance. They refer many clients to their partner, Community Legal Aid. Call their hotline Monday through Thursdays before 1 p.m., or use their website to apply online instead.
Good to know: The Legal Assistance Corporation can help you with a wide variety of civil legal issues, including child custody, domestic violence, housing, health care, employment, government benefits and elder law issues. Their branch office in Fitchburg is only open on Tuesdays, but their main office in Worcester is open every weekday.
Good to know: The Small Claims Advisory Service is a group of volunteers who help the citizens of Massachusetts navigate the small claims system. They can help you with small claim issues related to auto law, consumer law, credit and debt law, home improvement law and landlord/tenant disputes.
Good to know: The Committee for Public Counsel Services is the Public Defender for Massachusetts. They oversee the provision of legal representation to indigent persons in criminal cases when there is a right to counsel, as well as in certain related civil cases where an individual’s liberty is at stake, such as mental health proceedings.
Good to know: Prisoners’ Legal Services provides civil legal assistance to people who are incarcerated in Massachusetts state prisons or in the county jails. They can help with issues such as access to health Care (including mental health care), staff assaults, extreme conditions of confinement, and segregation. They do not handle criminal matters that are not directly related to incarceration.
Good to know: The Harvard Legal Aid Bureau represents people with no or low incomes who live in Suffolk or Middlesex County. Law students are supervised by licensed attorneys, and can help you with housing, family, government benefits, and wage and hour law matters.
Good to know: The Boston College Legal Assistance Bureau is run by Boston College law students and supervised by licensed attorneys. They can help you with a wide variety of civil legal issues, in particular domestic violence prevention, family law, landlord-tenant disputes, and Social Security disability appeals.