CONSORTIUM FOR ACCESS TO JUSTICE
WHO WE ARE
The Consortium for Access to Justice (Consortium), is a national 501(c)3 not-for-profit formed by legal academics, legal professionals, and advocates of access to justice initiatives from across the country who were concerned about the growing “justice gap” – the difference between the civil legal needs of low-income Americans and the resources available to meet those needs.
WHAT WE DO
The need to create innovative solutions to this crisis prompted the creation of the Consortium, whose primary purpose is to increase accessibility to legal services for those unable to access those services, and to educate and train lawyers and law students - particularly those in solo, small firm, and not-for-profit entities - on the skills and practice efficiencies necessary to serve clients in a cost-effective manner.
HOW WE DO IT
The Consortium accomplishes its goals by working with lawyer incubator programs, residency programs for lawyers, non-profit law firms (collectively, “Programs”) and other organizations that support such programs to:
- Assist existing and future Programs in the successful development and management of such programs;
- Create a repository for written materials and electronic links to other resources related to law practice management;
- Facilitate research and development of innovative methods of delivering affordable legal services;
- Advance legal education and professional conduct to ensure the continued development and dissemination of legal services to moderate and low-income individuals, small businesses, and other entities that historically have been unable to access affordable legal services;
- Collect and share data, and best practices about Programs and its participants;
- Facilitate and coordinate access to justice initiatives;
- Provide opportunities and economies of scale through group bargaining with providers of goods and services.
WHY WE DO IT
71% of low-income households have experienced a civil legal problem in the past year. This rate is higher for households with survivors of domestic violence or sexual assault (97%), with parents/guardians of kids under 18 (80%), and with disabled persons (80%). Data Source: 2017 Justice Gap Measurement Survey.
Low-income Americans seek professional legal help for only 20% of the legal problems they face. The top reasons for not seeking legal help are:
- Deciding to deal with a problem on one’s own;
- Not knowing where to look for help or what resources might exist;
- Not being sure whether their problem is “legal.”
In 2017, low-income Americans received limited or no legal help for an estimated 1.1 million legal problems.
The Consortium for Access to Justice’s mission is to provide targeted training to current and future lawyers on the skills and practice efficiencies necessary to ensure equal access to qualified legal resources so that all communities have cost-effective legal services readily available.
CONSORTIUM FOR ACCESS TO JUSTICE ANNUAL CONFERENCE
The Consortium for Access to Justice is pleased to announce that its 7th annual Access to Justice Conference on incubators, residencies, apprenticeships and non-profit law firms will take place July 24, 2020. This will be our first online conference and will be free of charge.
Click on the link below for more details.