Read on to learn why Kathleen volunteers:
- Why do you choose to volunteer with MVLS?
It’s pretty simple – because I can. There are people who need help, I can spare the time, and MVLS makes it super simple with screening. The staff is great to work with and the portal makes it easy to get things done.
- Do you have any standout stories?
Sorry no. Just the usual thing – a will, a power of attorney and an advance care directive. I have a few tax cases I take as well.
- What is your favorite part about volunteering with MVLS?
The clients – they do appreciate what I have to contribute to their situation. It is such a relief for many not to worry about what will happen after they pass away. For many people, unintended tax reporting errors can lead to nightmares they don’t know how to solve and can mean the difference between food and shelter and no food and no shelter.
- Why should other attorneys do pro bono?
Attorneys are generally problem solvers or advocates. Pro bono work often gives attorneys the freedom to work on something without worrying about the bottom line for the case. Sometimes it’s a matter of expanding into a new area of law to try something different. Other times it’s just to get pro bono reporting hours in during the year. It may be for the personal satisfaction. Just give it a try, you’re really making a difference for someone.
- Where do you see the impact civil legal services in the next ten years?
If the wealth gap continues to widen, and law becomes more and more complex (did anyone figure out the TCJA kiddie tax computation?), simple legal services are going to continue moving out of reach of much of the population. Simple things like passing a house along to children, managing finances for elderly parents, and correcting an earned income tax credit will no longer be possible for a wide swath of the population.