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Volunteer Lawyers Help with Legal Issues
Posted on: 01/10/2013
By  Kylie Smith
 
Navigating the waters of the justice system can be a daunting and confusing task for many. The Washington County Bar Association and Southeastern Ohio Legal Services help local residents with a free legal advice clinic, held monthly in Marietta.

Several local lawyers, along with a non-attorney registrar, volunteer at each clinic; Robin Bozian, the clinic’s managing attorney explains how it work.

“Those who come to the clinic will meet with a lawyer and discuss what kind of legal matter they have, review paper work, give them advice or suggestions on how they might way to proceed,” says Bozian. “We also have a huge array of pro se documents, which are documents people can use to represent themselves in court.”

Bozian says people often come to the clinic in with domestic issues such as child support or custody. “We also have people with landlord-tenant issues, consumer issues, such as a problem car purchase, and those who want to expunge their criminal record – we’ve dealt with a whole host of things.”

She says the most important thing is to bring in any and all paperwork regarding your legal matter. “Bringing in too much paperwork is always better than bringing in too little – the attorneys are good at figuring out which piece is most important.”

However, she notes that the advice clinic is exactly that – a clinic solely for advice, and participants should not expect attorneys to take the case or deal with it any further after the clinic.

Robin Bozian says participants’ feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. “We have people who have said things like ‘This has been a god send’ or ‘The lawyer explained to me how to approach the situation and provided me with documents I needed’ and so on. The people are very, very appreciative.”

The free legal advice clinic is the third Wednesday of each month with the next coming up January 16. They’re held from 6 to 8 p.m. at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church at 320 Second Street in Marietta. Walk-ins are welcome.


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