Pro Bono Net, the Immigration Advocates Network, and partners are pleased to announce the publication of Remote Legal Support: A Guide for Nonprofit and Pro Bono Innovation. It is a collaborative text by more than 10 organizations, to pool expert resources and experience. It features our national survey results, as well as successful Remote Legal Support programs and their program logistics, processes, challenges, tools, checklists, sample documents, and best practices. Complete with an interactive appendix, this manual will help organizations learn about and explore opportunities to build their own remote legal support projects.
In early 2019, Pro Bono Net teamed up with over 10 organizations to explore different ways to leverage technology and share strategies that increase rural and underserved communities’ access to justice. We conducted a national survey of immigration nonprofits to understand the field’s experience and interest in offering Remote Legal Support (RLS) programs.
Survey recipients answered questions about their current practices, interests, capacities, engagements, in using technology for a service delivery model. The survey asked about basic use of everyday technology and centered the idea of Remote Legal Support: a technology-based approach to providing off-site legal consultation, support, and services to people in underserved or rural areas.
The survey results showed strong interest by more than 200 responding staff at organizations, and the need for guidance to develop remote legal support models in their communities. Organizations had little experience but a strong desire to try technology-based strategies to reach rural and underserved clients. They identified barriers to developing Remote Legal Support projects, including sufficient staff, partnerships, training, and technology. Organizations also identified resources that would help them explore RLS options: a training manual, examples of successful programs, sample documents, and more.
Pro Bono Net will work with partners on a webinar series, to help interested organizations and communities foster Remote Legal Support partnerships. Click HERE to download the manual, and stay tuned for events to come. If you are interested in piloting a Remote Legal Support Partnership/Program, email firstname.lastname@example.org.