PRO BONO OPPORTUNITIES

Our pro bono attorney partners are an important part of our success. MHAS is a member of the SoCal Pro Bono Managers, and we participate in the ABA’s Pro Bono Week Celebration each year. We have a variety of opportunities for attorneys to partners with us on cases in a pro bono capacity. MHAS is also proud to be a part of California’s Campaign for Justice.

MHAS’s pro bono opportunities include the following:

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) Appeals:
When adults or transitional age youth have mental health disabilities that cause them to be unable to work, pro bono attorneys represent clients at appeal hearings. Representation includes reviewing medical records, drafting a brief and appearing at the hearing.

Special Education Compliance and Due Process Complaints:
When school districts fail to comply with special education law resulting in failure to assess students for needed education services and failure to provide those services, pro bono attorneys draft compliance complaints that result in state investigation of school district violations of the law. When school districts and parents disagree about eligibility or type of services to which a child is entitled, due process complaint proceedings, including mediation and hearing, result in much needed services for children.

Special Education IEP (Individualized Education Plan) Meetings:
Pro bono attorneys attend IEP meetings at schools to support parent advocacy for appropriate services for children.

Fair Housing or Special Education Law Trainings:
Pro bono attorneys train community members and service providers to empower self-advocacy and institutional compliance with disability rights laws, including state and federal fair housing laws or special education rights and advocacy.

Warrant Resolution:
Pro bono attorneys investigate outstanding warrants dealing with minor infractions that clients are unable to resolve, identify strategies for resolution and appear with client in court.

Periodic Community Legal Clinics:
MHAS hosts periodic half-day legal clinics in the community to provide advice and consultation to low-income individuals on matters such as special education, government benefits and housing rights. Clinic locations have included Antelope Valley, Pasadena and Koreatown. MHAS has a recurrent clinic in Pasadena on the second Tuesday morning of each month.

Litigation Opportunities:
MHAS participates in impact litigation and works with pro bono attorneys on these cases. Case placement of litigation matters for clients who have a range of legal issues is available from time to time.

For information on how to volunteer, contact Pam Marx at pmarx@mhas-la.org.