Older people sometimes need legal assistance. For those who cannot afford to pay privately for this assistance, Legal Aid of North Carolina, Inc. ( sometimes called LANC) is a possible resource for civil (not criminal) matters. This network of non-profit law offices serves eligible citizens across the state. Some private attorneys also volunteer time through pro bono programs, often in cooperation with Legal Services offices. Information available from the North Carolina Bar Association may help in identifying and working with an attorney.
- The American Bar Association Commission on Law and Aging offers a useful site dedicated to examining the law-related concerns of older persons.
- Senior Citizens Handbook
The Young Lawyers Division of the NC Bar Association publishes a Senior Citizens Handbook in both English and Spanish. This handbook provides basic information about the rights of and opportunities for NC older adults and gives cautions related to some concerns confronting seniors.
- NCBA Lawyer Referral Service
The North Carolina Lawyer Referral Service is a program of the North Carolina Bar Association Foundation which provides the name of an attorney in a particular area of law based on the callers geographic location. Clients are offered a 30 minute consultation with an attorney at a cost of no more than $30.
If it is more convenient to contact them by telephone, you can call during the hours of 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. People calling from within North Carolina may call toll free (800) 662-7660. If calling within the Raleigh area or from out of state, the number is: (919) 677-8574.
Some attorneys do not charge for brief consultations. Some attorneys do. Callers should clarify the consultation fee in advance with the attorney.
The Lawyer Referral Service does NOT provide referrals to pro bono (free) attorneys. All attorneys on the lawyer referral service panel expect to be paid for their services in most instances, except where a contingency fee structure has been established. For a referral to a pro bono program, please contact the Pro Bono Project of the North Carolina Bar Association at (800) 662-7407.
- The National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, Inc. (NAELA) is a professional association of attorneys who are dedicated to improving the quality of legal services provided to the elderly. Some of the issues NAELA members assist their clients with include, but are not limited to: public benefits, probate and estate planning, guardianship/conservatorship, and health and long-term care planning. For more information or for help locating an Elder law Attorney in your area, go to the NAELA web site at: http://www.naela.com/
- North Carolina Law Schools
- Wake Forest University School of Law, Winston-Salem
Wake Forest has an Elder Law Clinic and services are free to qualifying low income seniors. In addition to providing legal services, their web site has lots of helpful information for seniors. See: http://law.wfu.edu/
- Duke Law School, Durham
Duke has an AIDS clinic and other clinics and programs. For more information go to http://www.law.duke.edu/ and then click on Centers and Programs in the left margin.
- University of North Carolina School of Law, Chapel Hill
UNC has information on clinics at:
- North Carolina Central University School of Law, Durham
NCCU has clinics that provide services in ciivl matters such as land lord tenant problems and the drafting of wills. For more information call 919-530-7166 for information on specific civil law clinics.
NCCU also has a Pro Se Child Custody Clinic that can help grandparents raising grandchildren and parents (law students explain how to file your own custody documents without an attorney). Call 919-530-7169 for a recording on general information, specific dates and times and to register for the next clinic.
- Campbell University School of Law, Buies Creek
Campbell has a Juvenile Justice Project.
For information go to: http://law.campbell.edu/
February 11, 2013