Last updated: September 26, 2013
The legal world can be a confusing place, so enlisting the aid of a trained professional is usually in your best interest. Unfortunately, many people cannot afford legal representation. If you are one of them, Legal Aid is a fantastic way to even the odds in your favor. Legal Aid groups around Greenville specialize in representing low-income individuals and people in particularly vulnerable positions, such as recent immigrants, children or battered women. 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 Greenville.
Good to know: South Carolina Legal Services provides free legal services in a wide variety of civil legal matters to low income residents of South Carolina. This group is large and widespread, with office locations throughout South Carolina. They can assist you with all typical legal matters, including bankruptcy, education, employment, family, health, housing, elder Law and probate. Check to see whether you meet their income guidelines, then try calling their toll-free centralized intake line at (888) 346-5592 to see if they can help you. They have specialized programs to help migrant workers and individuals with limited English proficiency.
Good to know: The South Carolina Appleseed Legal Justice Center provides free representation for low income South Carolinians on issues such as housing, education, hunger, public benefits, domestic violence, immigration, health care and consumer issues. They recommend calling South Carolina Legal Services if you are seeking direct representation.
Good to know: The South Carolina Immigrant Victim serves as a network of partners - including immigrant communities, victim service providers, healthcare and legal professionals and law enforcement agencies - that work together to serve immigrant victims of crime by finding culturally and linguistically appropriate resources.
Good to know: Catholic Charities provides social services to individuals of any religious background. On the legal front, their immigration legal services program specializes in helping immigrants and their families on a wide variety of immigration issues. They also run a senior care program that may be able to assist you with elder law issues.
Good to know: Safe Harbor is dedicated to helping victims of domestic abuse in upstate South Carolina. They provide safe emergency shelter, counseling, legal advocacy and transitional housing in Greenville, Pickens, Anderson and Oconee counties.
Good to know: SAFE Homes aims to stop domestic and sexual violence. They offer temporary emergency shelter to victims of domestic violence and their children and advocate on behalf of victims to alleviate their suffering.
Good to know: The Julie Valentine Center works to stop sexual violence and child abuse. They offer confidential services for victims of rape, domestic abuse and child abuse. They can help Spanish speaking individuals.
Good to know: The Rape Crisis Council offers direct services for sexual assault victims in Pickens County. They provide counseling references, recovery books, victim advocacy and self-defense classes.
Tel: (864) 467-8522 (Greenville)
Tel: (864) 898-5577 (Pickens)
Tel: (864) 260-4048 (Anderson)
Good to know: Public Defender services are provided by offices located in each county to people charged with a crime who cannot afford to hire a private lawyer. These organizations are independent of the State but receive funding from the State via the Office of Indigent Defense. Try this link for contact information of the public defender from your county.
Good to know: The South Carolina Judicial system operates a self-help website that can provide you with useful information without needing a lawyer. You can also find the correct form to use with their form finder.
Good to know: LawHelp is a website run by South Carolina Legal Services that can provide you with information organized by practice area. This website is particularly useful because the information is specific to South Carolina law. You can find articles on consumer law, family law, education, domestic abuse, elder law and estate planning.