There are many benefits available that allow a person to obtain a free or hire an attorney at a greatly reduced rate. Most union members are eligible through their union for this type of service. United Auto Workers have a plan that allows their members to one free legal consultation for 30 minutes on any particular topic. They are also eligible to have an attorney review documents and send one letter, also at no charge. Many unions avail themselves of the Union Privilege Legal Service Plan. This Plan covers numerous unions that allow their members free consultation with an attorney, and free review of documents. This Plan also allows a member to hire an attorney at 25% off the normal hourly rate.
Another source for an attorney to represent you would be the American Automobile Association [AAA]. They will provide up to $500.00 in attorney’s fees in defending you against any traffic citation other than drunk driving and criminal violations. AAA will also guarantee up to $1000.00 towards an arrest bond for a driving violation other than drunk driving and criminal.
For those who are members of the Armed Forces of the United States, you can receive free legal advice through the Judge Advocate General’s Office (JAG). You may also get free legal advice through the Armed Forces for such matters as writing a will, alimony and child support.
If you are involved in automobile accident in which you are at fault, your insurance carrier will provide free legal representation to you in defending any suit covered by your policy. On the other hand, if you are involved in an automobile accident that is not your fault, many lawyers, including myself, will represent you without any advance fee for a one-third fee of whatever is recovered (you are responsible for out of pocket expenses to the attorney, such as photocopying charges, fees for obtaining records, deposition costs and court costs).
The Public Defender will represent you for free or minimum charge if you meet certain low income requirements. Many lawyers, including the author of this article, will provide a free initial consultation on almost any legal matter that they handle.
Try contacting your local Bar Association. Most, for a small fee (usually $35.00 or $40.00) will hook you up to a local attorney who will give you a half hour consultation. This is usually enough time for the lawyer to point you in the right direction on representation. You should take advantage of all these legal services. One of the reasons that lawyers are now permitted to advertise is to inform the general public of the availability of lawyers for free initial consultation. Check with your employer to see what benefits of legal representation and services are available to you at no or little cost.