Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Economy hurts Legal Aid

In an article in The New York Times today we are reminded that "Scores of legal aid societies that help poor people with noncriminal cases — like disputes over foreclosures, evictions and eligibility for unemployment benefits — are being forced to cut their staffs and services, even as requests for help have soared." Since, as the article points out "Legal aid groups have long benefited from little-known programs that draw interest earned from short-term deposits that lawyers hold in trust for clients during" many legal aid groups "have been hit hard by the Federal Reserve’s steep reduction of its benchmark interest rate, which finally plunged last month to near zero." The article is available here.

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