Free Legal Advice Offered at Lawyers in Libraries

Lawyers with Libraries

The Natchitoches Parish Library (NPL), in partnership with the Louisiana State Bar Association (LSBA) and the Louisiana Library Association (LLA), is presenting its fifth annual “Lawyers in Libraries statewide program on Oct. 22, 23, and 24 at the NPL. Free individual consultation will be provided by local attorneys on civil issues (no criminal) in 15-minute intervals from 10 AM to 1 PM at the NPL. There will also be seminars each evening from 6 PM to 7PM. The first seminar will be Divorce Law, on Oct. 22, followed by Domestic Violence Protective Orders, on Oct. 23, and finally Criminal Conviction Expungements, on Oct. 24. The seminars are open to the public and will include a Q&A session.

It is recommended that those interested in a consultation sign up for a time slot beforehand to guarantee they are seen; while walk-ins are allowed registered participants are given priority. To schedule a free consultation on your non-criminal legal matter, call the NPL at 318.357.3280 ext. 1, or message via the NPL’s Facebook page; you may also sign up in person at the Second Floor Circulation Desk.

“We are seeing so many Natchitoches Parish residents represent themselves in court on issues involving domestic violence, housing, custody, child support, and other core needs. ‘Lawyers in Libraries’ helps the self-represented litigant to identify legal options, regardless of financial circumstance,” explained District Court Judge, Desiree Duhon Dyess.

Judge Lala B. Sylvester continued, “Knowledge is power, and the more self-represented litigants know about their legal issue, the more confident they will be in court which could be an intimidating experience.”

“Public libraries are natural starting points for people in search of information and services,” said Alan Niette, NPL Community Outreach Coordinator, “and our staff is happy to provide direction to available resources, including for legal matter, but we cannot offer legal advice. We are extremely excited each year to work with our local lawyers to host the ‘Lawyers in Libraries’ program to our patrons.”

The annual statewide “Lawyers in Libraries” program celebrates its fifth year of service to the public during the week of October 22, 2018. The Supreme Court of Louisiana and the LSBA support this annual volunteer attorney project held during National Pro Bono Celebration and thank the LLA for its ongoing involvement. The program has grown consistently since being launched in 2014 and has assisted over 3,000 Louisianans and reached patrons in ever parish in the state. “Lawyers in Libraries” is a partnership between the LSBA, LLA, Law Library of Louisiana, LSU Law Library, legal aid partners, local bar associations, and other community partners.