Montana Legal Services Association http://www.mtlsa.org A non-profit legal aid organization that provides free legal assistance to low-income Montanans Wed, 16 Apr 2014 21:03:16 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.8.1 New MLSA Pro Bono Program Coordinator http://www.mtlsa.org/2014/04/angie-wagenhals-mlsas-pro-bono-program-coordinator/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=angie-wagenhals-mlsas-pro-bono-program-coordinator http://www.mtlsa.org/2014/04/angie-wagenhals-mlsas-pro-bono-program-coordinator/#comments Tue, 15 Apr 2014 19:40:54 +0000 http://www.mtlsa.org/?p=4588 Link to post: New MLSA Pro Bono Program Coordinator

MLSA is pleased to announce that Angie Wagenhals is MLSA’s full-time pro bono coordinator. Angie has worked with MLSA since 2011 as a program assistant with pro bono coordination duties, but now will dedicate all her time to support pro

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Link to post: New MLSA Pro Bono Program Coordinator

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Angie Wagenhals is MLSA’s Pro Bono Coordinator


MLSA is pleased to announce that Angie Wagenhals is MLSA’s full-time pro bono coordinator.

Angie has worked with MLSA since 2011 as a program assistant with pro bono coordination duties, but now will dedicate all her time to support pro bono and help expand pro bono statewide.

Among Angie's many duties are expanding legal clinics for pro se litigants with pro bono attorney instruction, as well as coordinating quarterly continuing legal education credit trainings for pro bono attorneys.

Angie can be contacted at 406/543-8343 extension 207 or awagenha@mtlsa.org.

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MLSA’s Alison Paul Awarded National Medical-Legal Fellowship http://www.mtlsa.org/2014/03/mlsa-awarded-national-medicallegal-fellowship/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mlsa-awarded-national-medicallegal-fellowship http://www.mtlsa.org/2014/03/mlsa-awarded-national-medicallegal-fellowship/#comments Wed, 26 Mar 2014 16:23:14 +0000 http://www.mtlsa.org/?p=4561 Link to post: MLSA’s Alison Paul Awarded National Medical-Legal Fellowship

Montana Legal Services Association (MLSA) Executive Director Alison Paul has been selected for a national medical-legal fellowship in the “Where Health Meets Justice” program. This fellowship was awarded to 24 leaders providing legal aid to the poor and is designed

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Link to post: MLSA’s Alison Paul Awarded National Medical-Legal Fellowship

Montana Legal Services Association (MLSA) Executive Director Alison Paul has been selected for a national medical-legal fellowship in the “Where Health Meets Justice” program. This fellowship was awarded to 24 leaders providing legal aid to the poor and is designed to improve the intersection of health and the law in each of their communities.

The program, a collaboration of the National Center for Medical-Legal Partnership (MLP) and the National Legal Aid and Defender Association (NLADA), with funding by the Public Welfare Foundation, will build healthcare expertise in the legal aid community so that organizations such as MLSA can better meet the legal needs of clients that affect their health.

“Legal needs related to housing, domestic violence and public benefits are inextricably linked to the health and well-being of low-income communities,” said Camille Holmes, Director for Leadership and Racial Equality at NLADA. “For decades, civil legal aid offices have worked to improve housing conditions, protect utility access and appeal benefit denials. But what has been missing is a concerted effort to align these services with the delivery of healthcare for the same populations. This fellowship aims to remedy that.”

MLSA is a non-profit law firm that empowers low-income people by providing legal information, advice, and other services free of charge, thereby protecting and enhancing the civil legal rights of, and promoting systemic change for, Montanans living in poverty.
While MLSA has a long-standing partnership with Riverstone Health in Billings to assist with the legal needs of its patients, participation in the fellowship program will allow MLSA to learn new funding strategies and opportunities within the healthcare sector, as well as to strengthen the organization’s tools and processes for providing exemplary services across the state.

Paul joins twenty-three other senior level staff from legal aid agencies in 21 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico as inaugural fellows. During the year-long program, a faculty of national experts in healthcare administration, policy, research and economics will guide the fellows.

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MLSA Attorneys Honored as Champions of Justice http://www.mtlsa.org/2014/03/mlsa-attorneys-honored-awards/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mlsa-attorneys-honored-awards http://www.mtlsa.org/2014/03/mlsa-attorneys-honored-awards/#comments Wed, 12 Mar 2014 16:15:21 +0000 http://www.mtlsa.org/?p=4531 Link to post: MLSA Attorneys Honored as Champions of Justice

MLSA is pleased to announce that MLSA attorneys Bob LaRoche and Amy Hall have been honored with the Montana Justice Foundation's (MJF) Champions of Justice awards. Also honored are several individuals nominated by MLSA for their work with MLSA’s pro

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Link to post: MLSA Attorneys Honored as Champions of Justice

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MLSA is pleased to announce that MLSA attorneys Bob LaRoche and Amy Hall have been honored with the Montana Justice Foundation's (MJF) Champions of Justice awards.

Also honored are several individuals nominated by MLSA for their work with MLSA’s pro bono efforts, including Deborah Anspach, Gary Connelly, Jane Cowley, Jessica Fehr, Shannon Hathaway, Diane Kaatz, Marijo MacDonald, and Sheila Verlanic.

Part of MJF's 35th Anniversary, the awards honor 35 Montanans who have made significant contributions to the law over the last three-and-a-half decades.

The charitable arm of the Montana legal community, MJF's mission is to achieve equal access to justice for all Montanans through effective funding and leadership.

MLSA congratulates Mr. LaRoche and Ms. Hall, as well as all other honorees.

For more information about the awards and recipients, visit the MJF website.

 

 

 

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MLSA Attorneys Admitted to Fort Belknap Bar http://www.mtlsa.org/2014/02/mlsa-attorneys-admitted-fort-belknap-bar/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mlsa-attorneys-admitted-fort-belknap-bar http://www.mtlsa.org/2014/02/mlsa-attorneys-admitted-fort-belknap-bar/#comments Fri, 28 Feb 2014 18:55:31 +0000 http://www.mtlsa.org/?p=4496 Link to post: MLSA Attorneys Admitted to Fort Belknap Bar

MLSA attorneys Jen Hill-Hart and Joe Hardgrave were recently admitted to the Fort Belknap Tribal Bar. Ms. Hill-Hart is also a member of the bar of the Chippewa-Cree at Rocky Boy and Mr. Hardgrave is a member of the bars

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Link to post: MLSA Attorneys Admitted to Fort Belknap Bar

MLSA attorneys Jen Hill-Hart and Joe Hardgrave were recently admitted to the Fort Belknap Tribal Bar. Ms. Hill-Hart is also a member of the bar of the Chippewa-Cree at Rocky Boy and Mr. Hardgrave is a member of the bars of the Crow and Northern Cheyenne. Both are also admitted to the State Bar of Montana.

The Fort Belknap Indian Reservation is homeland to the Gros Ventre (Aaniiih) and the Assiniboine (Nakoda) Tribes and has a tribal membership of 7,000 enrolled members.

Find out more at these links:

MLSA Indian Law Practice Group

Fort Belknap Tribal Nation

 

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MLSA Shares Expertise on Providing Access to Justice through Technology http://www.mtlsa.org/2014/02/mlsa-shares-expertise-providing-access-justice-technology/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mlsa-shares-expertise-providing-access-justice-technology http://www.mtlsa.org/2014/02/mlsa-shares-expertise-providing-access-justice-technology/#comments Mon, 24 Feb 2014 20:49:26 +0000 http://www.mtlsa.org/?p=4481 Link to post: MLSA Shares Expertise on Providing Access to Justice through Technology

Alison Paul, MLSA Executive Director, recently participated in a panel discussion in Austin, Texas, on how technological innovations can facilitate access to justice. MLSA, known nationwide as a leader in legal aid technological innovation, participated in the panel to share

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Link to post: MLSA Shares Expertise on Providing Access to Justice through Technology

Alison Paul, MLSA Executive Director, recently participated in a panel discussion in Austin, Texas, on how technological innovations can facilitate access to justice.

MLSA, known nationwide as a leader in legal aid technological innovation, participated in the panel to share information and practices towards the goal of increasing access to justice in Montana and the rest of the nation.

The panel, moderated by Legal Services Corporation (LSC) President James J. Sandman, included executive directors and lawyers from LSC-funded organizations and others in the legal aid community. Organizations that were represented included Texas Legal Services Center, Lone Star Legal Aid, Arkansas Legal Services Partnership, LSC, and Legal Aid Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago.

The event was held in conjunction with a judges’ panel on the importance of access to justice to the judiciary.

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Low Income Taxpayer Clinic At Tax Help Day http://www.mtlsa.org/2014/02/income-taxpayer-clinic-attends-tax-day/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=income-taxpayer-clinic-attends-tax-day http://www.mtlsa.org/2014/02/income-taxpayer-clinic-attends-tax-day/#comments Wed, 12 Feb 2014 22:50:31 +0000 http://www.mtlsa.org/?p=4459 Link to post: Low Income Taxpayer Clinic At Tax Help Day

MLSA's Low Income Taxpayer Clinic (LITC) recently attended the Tax Help Day event in Helena, along with other tax-related service providers. At the event, LITC presented information about LITC and the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) to both individuals and

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Link to post: Low Income Taxpayer Clinic At Tax Help Day

MLSA's Low Income Taxpayer Clinic (LITC) recently attended the Tax Help Day event in Helena, along with other tax-related service providers.

At the event, LITC presented information about LITC and the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) to both individuals and service providers, as well as made brochures, flyers, and palm cards available to participants.

LITC will be presenting on LITC and the EITC in Billings and Great Falls — look for news about those events in upcoming weeks.

LITC helps low-income taxpayers with federal tax issues with the IRS year-round, including:

  • Negotiations or Settlements of Tax Debt

  • Innocent Spouse Relief Requests

  • Injured Spouse Claims

  • Earned Income Tax Credit Appeals

  • Audits or Examinations

  • Deficiency Notices

  • Tax Court

  • Liens and Levies

  • Referrals to Tax Assistance Organizations

(LITC does NOT help prepare tax returns).

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Want to know more? Read about LITC here.

 

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Legal Services for Homeless Montanans http://www.mtlsa.org/2014/02/mlsa-connects-people-legal-services-project-homeless-connect/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mlsa-connects-people-legal-services-project-homeless-connect http://www.mtlsa.org/2014/02/mlsa-connects-people-legal-services-project-homeless-connect/#comments Mon, 03 Feb 2014 21:47:03 +0000 http://www.mtlsa.org/?p=4444 Link to post: Legal Services for Homeless Montanans

MLSA attorneys and AmeriCorps members recently attended the Billings Community Connect and Missoula Homeless Connect events, providing legal information to approximately 300 people who are homeless or at-risk of homelessness. MLSA addressed attendees’ legal needs by providing legal topic brochures,

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Link to post: Legal Services for Homeless Montanans

MLSA attorneys and AmeriCorps members recently attended the Billings Community Connect and Missoula Homeless Connect events, providing legal information to approximately 300 people who are homeless or at-risk of homelessness.

MLSA addressed attendees’ legal needs by providing legal topic brochures, applications, and business cards featuring information for both the MLSA HelpLine and MontanaLawHelp.org. Further, MLSA offered private consultations for attendees who needed help filling out applications and/or specific legal information for their problems.

MLSA attended the events in support of fighting poverty by providing legal services to Montanans who cannot afford attorneys. If you represent an organization that would like to inquire about MLSA’s outreach and education, please contact us here.

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Find Out More

Billings Community Connect Serves Hundreds | Billings Gazette

Missoula's Project Homeless Connect Links Services with People in Need | Missoulian

 

 

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MLSA and the War on Poverty http://www.mtlsa.org/2014/01/4381/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=4381 http://www.mtlsa.org/2014/01/4381/#comments Wed, 29 Jan 2014 17:30:03 +0000 http://www.mtlsa.org/?p=4381 Link to post: MLSA and the War on Poverty

Fifty years ago in January, President Lyndon B. Johnson called for an “unconditional war on poverty.”  A year later MLSA began providing legal services to low-income Montanans and joined that fight. How does MLSA fight poverty, you may wonder? The

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Link to post: MLSA and the War on Poverty

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President Lyndon B. Johnson during Poverty Tour -LBJ Library photo by Cecil Stoughton


Fifty years ago in January, President Lyndon B. Johnson called for an “unconditional war on poverty.”  A year later MLSA began providing legal services to low-income Montanans and joined that fight.

How does MLSA fight poverty, you may wonder? The answer is that MLSA services result in positive economic benefits not only for clients but also for all Montanans.

According to recent studies*, the positive economic benefits of civil legal aid include:

  • Substantial economic benefits to the public through prevention of expensive events such as domestic violence, eviction, health emergencies, and access to/maintenance of public benefits that prevent financial emergencies,
  • Income for low-income people to pay for daily necessities such as food, housing, utilities and transportation, which reduces the welfare burden on state and local governments,
  • Dollars saved for debt-strapped families that in many cases prevent worse problems like eviction, foreclosure and homelessness that would impose much greater economic costs on society,
  • A permanent economic stimulus resulting from federal dollars achieved through legal aid advocates’ successful representation in matters such as SSD, SSI, Earned-Income Tax Credits (EITC) and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance; the dollars circulate through local economies, providing income for businesses and jobs for working people,
  • Increased tax revenues for state and local jurisdictions in the form of taxes paid by the occupants of the jobs supported by the economic stimulus,
  • Cost savings for taxpayers from legal aid’s success in addressing community-wide problems such as homelessness and domestic violence,
  • Efficiencies in the courts made possible by legal aid’s representation of clients and assistance to self-represented litigants, and
  • Economic benefits for health care providers, including Medicaid reimbursements for providing emergency care to uninsured low-income people that the providers would otherwise have to write off.

Today MLSA is as committed to “Fighting Poverty, Achieving Justice, Improving Lives” as much as ever, for the benefit of clients and all Montanans. Please join us! Get involved and/or donate.

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*Economic Benefits of Civil Legal Aid, prepared by Laura K. Abel, National Center for Access to Justice at Cardozo Law School

*Economic Impacts of Legal Aid: Civil Justice for Low-Income People Creates Ripple Effects (MIE Journal Fall 2011).

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Support MLSA with AmazonSmile http://www.mtlsa.org/2013/11/support-mlsa-amazonsmile/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=support-mlsa-amazonsmile http://www.mtlsa.org/2013/11/support-mlsa-amazonsmile/#comments Wed, 27 Nov 2013 18:21:09 +0000 http://www.mtlsa.org/?p=4210 Link to post: Support MLSA with AmazonSmile

Montana Legal Services Association Just in time for the holiday season, Montana Legal Services Association is part of the AmazonSmile program. For each eligible purchase you make on Amazon.com, 0.5% of the sale is donated to MLSA through AmazonSmile. It’s

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Link to post: Support MLSA with AmazonSmile

Montana Legal Services Association

Just in time for the holiday season, Montana Legal Services Association is part of the AmazonSmile program. For each eligible purchase you make on Amazon.com, 0.5% of the sale is donated to MLSA through AmazonSmile. It’s as simple as that!

AmazonSmile supports over one million 501(c)(3) organizations, and tens of millions of Amazon products are eligible for the program. All eligible products are clearly marked “Eligible for AmazonSmile donation” on their product page.

Shopping through AmazonSmile is no different than regular shopping on Amazon.com. So this year, when you’re making online purchases, why not make a donation to MLSA at the same time? Follow the link below to get started.

AmazonSmile (MLSA)

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Tribal Nations and MLSA http://www.mtlsa.org/2013/11/tribal-nations-mlsa/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=tribal-nations-mlsa http://www.mtlsa.org/2013/11/tribal-nations-mlsa/#comments Tue, 26 Nov 2013 22:29:09 +0000 http://www.mtlsa.org/?p=4198 Link to post: Tribal Nations and MLSA

During Montana's American Indian Heritage Day (Fourth Friday in September) and National Native American Heritage Month (November), we take the opportunity to look back on MLSA's collaborations with Montana's Tribal Nations. For over 30 years, MLSA has been honored to

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During Montana's American Indian Heritage Day (Fourth Friday in September) and National Native American Heritage Month (November), we take the opportunity to look back on MLSA's collaborations with Montana's Tribal Nations. For over 30 years, MLSA has been honored to collaborate with Montana Tribal Nations to provide effective services to Tribal members both in and out of court. With MLSA, Tribal members protect their rights against illegal and unfair actions by creditors,  get repairs made so that housing is safe and healthy, build safety nets for families affected by domestic violence, and much more.

Learn More:

MLSA's Indian Law Work

Office of Public Instruction Information on Native American Heritage Month 2013
 
President Obama's Proclamation for Native American Heritage Month 2013
 
Montana's American Indian Heritage Day (4th Friday of September)

Learn More about Montana's Tribal Members:

 
 
 
 
 
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