Statewide Virtual Volunteer Opportunities
Colorado Legal Services offers volunteer opportunities for attorneys, paralegals, and law students with virtual clinics through which you can serve low-income clients in communities across Colorado from the convenience of your own office or home. All of these clinics are held using technology such as videoconferencing, shared document creation and e-mail. These clinics vary in legal topic, dates, time commitment, and the type of help provided. Take a look below for the clinic that matches the volunteer experience you’d like to have.
For further questions about these clinics or how to apply, please contact Jen Cuesta at firstname.lastname@example.org, or 303-866-9384.
San Luis Valley Virtual Satellite Clinics (more information here)
These free clinics provide brief legal consultations to low-income clients from the San Luis Valley and are conducted in partnership with the Saguache Public Library and the Blanca/Ft. Garland Public Library. The clinics cover multiple legal topics, including family law, landlord/tenant, consumer/collections, small claims, and probate. Volunteers are provided with a comprehensive handbook which provides an overview of all the areas of law covered by the clinic and are supported during the clinic by the clinic coordinator.
These clinics occur the last Thursday of every month from 5:00 to 7:00pm, and one volunteer is able to serve both locations. This volunteer opportunity is ideal for an attorney who wants a clear time commitment once a month. It is done by videoconference – volunteers simply choose a private location where they can access internet, a webcam and a microphone. For these clinics we prefer attorneys with experience in family law. Experience in probate or housing is also useful.
If you would like to learn more about this clinic, or begin volunteering with this clinic, please complete this application (it will download as a Word doc) then email it and your resume to Jennifer Cuesta at email@example.com.
Cortez Family Law Clinic (more information here)
This free, monthly clinic provides low-income clients from the 22nd JD (Montezuma and Dolores Counties) with advice on family law issues, including help with both new and post-decree family law cases. This includes assistance with divorce, APRs, modifications to parenting orders and child support, enforcement of child support through judgement, garnishment of wages or income reassignment, and motions to relocate. This clinic is the last Tuesday of each month from 4:00-7:00pm, with drop-in from 4:00 to 5:00, and pre-set appointments from 5:00 to 7:00pm.
Attorneys will virtually meet with clients to provide legal advice and to help draft legal forms. Before talking with the client, volunteers will be provided with each client’s name and the name of the adverse party to check for conflicts. Attorneys, in the case of clients with an appointment and a post-decree issue, will also receive the client’s relevant case documents before the clinic. Meetings with clients will occur by videoconference and will utilize screen sharing technology to allow the attorney to draft forms which the client can then print out at the end of the session. This clinic is ideal for an attorney who wants a more in-depth experience, but one that is limited to a monthly clinic and does not require travel. For this clinic, volunteer attorneys need experience in family law.
If you would like to learn more about this clinic or begin volunteering with this clinic, please complete this application (it will download as a Word doc) then e-mail it and your resume to Jennifer Cuesta at Colorado Legal Services, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Paralegals and Law Students – Virtual Volunteer Opportunities (more information here)
In order to help clients more effectively advocate and represent themselves in court proceedings, three of CLS’ virtual clinics prepare court forms for clients in addition to providing legal advice. To offer document preparation to clients, CLS needs volunteer paralegals and law students who can take on the drafting of court forms for clients through the following clinics:
- Record Sealing and Expungement Clinic: This clinic helps low-income, rural clients seal or expunge their criminal record. By assisting these clients, you can help them increase their ability to obtain employment, housing, public benefits, and access to other life-changing resources.
- Caregiver Clinic: This clinic helps low-income clients in the San Luis Valley who are primary caregivers of children to whom they are not the parent. By helping these clients obtain an adoption, guardianship or APR in relation to the child in their care, they become enabled to make necessary and vital medical and educational decisions for the child.
- Cortez Family Law Clinic: scroll up for description.
To volunteer, complete the application below. CLS will then contact you to complete the volunteer screening process. Once screened, volunteers are added to an e-mail listserv. When a clinic case arises that needs court forms, the clinic coordinator reaches out to the listserv with basic case information and a deadline by which the forms are needed. If a paralegal or law student has time to draft the documents, the volunteer e-mails the coordinator to let her know. The coordinator will then provide complete case information and the blank court forms. The volunteer is asked to draft and return those court forms by the deadline. The drafts are reviewed by an attorney and final court documents are provided to the client.
This clinic is ideal for a paralegal or law student who wants to volunteer and wants to learn more about court form preparation, but is not able to commit to a consistent time, or to travel to a specific location. Since this opportunity is coordinated through e-mail with no set clinic time, volunteers get to decide their level of commitment, when they work, and their work location.
If you would like to learn more about this volunteer opportunity or begin volunteering to do document drafting, please complete this application (it will download as a Word doc) and e-mail the application and your resume to Jennifer Cuesta at Colorado Legal Services, email@example.com.