2. What is the difference between civil and criminal legal services?
Civil legal service organizations (legal aid) represent people in cases related to private rights and civil disputes, such as housing, consumer, family and entitlement to public benefits. Criminal legal service organizations (public defenders) represent people charged in cases that relate to crimes, such as theft.
3. How does CCLA determine if I am eligible for services?
Although there is no fee for any of CCLA’s services, you must qualify for different programs. Financial eligibility is based upon the income and assets of individuals in your household. In most cases, the income of your household cannot exceed 125% of the federal poverty level, although we make allowances for certain expenses, such as child care. In reviewing your assets, we do not generally count your home or your automobile. Intake workers will assist you in completing an application and determine your eligibility for services. If you are 60 years of age or older or victim of a crime, there are no financial eligibility guidelines for our services. Eligibility for services is based upon other criteria, including whether your legal problem falls within our priority areas.
4. Is there a fee for obtaining legal services from CCLA?
There is no charge for the legal services rendered at CCLA, however you must meet certain qualifications for our services. You may also be required to pay certain fees assessed by the Clerk/Court.
5. Do you handle child support enforcement cases?
Generally, we do not handle child support enforcement cases. Please contact the County Child Support Enforcement Office for assistance.
6. What materials should I bring with me to CCLA?
Please call or review the information listed on this website under the particular area you need legal advice to determine what documents you need to bring with you when you come into the office.
7. Are there other options for me if a CCLA attorney cannot represent me?
Yes. Legal Aid Service of Broward County has a Pro Bono Project called Broward Lawyers Care. Private lawyers in the community volunteer to accept cases within our program priorities. Applicants must still meet the same guidelines as Legal Aid’s in-house services. Referrals for pro bono services are made through the in-house Legal Aid programs. For more information visit www.browardlegalaid.org.
If you are over-income, you may call the Broward County Bar Association’s Lawyer Referral Service at 954-764-8310. You will be referred to an attorney convenient to your home or office practicing in the area of law you need. This initial half hour consultation is $50.00. To obtain information on this service, go to www.browardbar.org.