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I’m a writer on a low income, where can I get free legal services in Massachusetts?

The Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts of Massachusetts (VLA) offers pro bono legal services, advice, and educational programming to artists and cultural organizations based in the state.

You need to meet their low income criteria to qualify. Their pro bono eligibility criteria is 300% of the Federal Poverty Guideline (currently $38,280 for a single-member household at the time of researching for this answer) for individuals, and an operating budget of $250,000 or less for organizations. For most applicants, the first page of your most recent federal tax return (Form 1040, 990, 1120, 1065, etc.) is sufficient. They advise that you redact your social security number for security purposes.

The areas of law they offer help with include housing, life planning, estate planning, nonprofit organizations, taxes, copyright, trademark, contracts, licensing, landlord/tenant, evaluation and first amendment concerns.

The VLA program has a panel of more than 750 attorneys who volunteer their time and services to provide legal counsel, education, and organizational support.

You can apply for legal assistance here. Note that there is an application fee.


Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts Webpage Screenshot.
Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts Webpage Screenshot.

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