HelpLine and Intake
Adam (not his real name) came into MLSA directly from the doctor, with a major health issue that he’d been told would likely result in his death within a day. Adam wanted to create a will. Recognizing the need to act immediately, an MLSA HelpLine intake worker consulted with Flint Murfitt, an MLSA attorney, who immediately dropped his current work to help Adam fill out a basic will. Within a short time HelpLine staff and Murfitt had notarized and witnessed the will, thereby giving Adam peace of mind that his estate would be managed according to his wishes.
Effective August 22, 2016, the HelpLine is operated Monday through Friday, 9:00 AM – 1:00 PM.
The MLSA HelpLine is gateway to MLSA's services including legal information and resources, advice, clinics, and representation.
The HelpLine has two full-time Intake Specialists to answer the phones Monday through Friday. In addition, MLSA has AmeriCorps*State – Justice for Montanans (JFM) members to provide additional help answering the phones and helping individuals who walk into one of MLSA's three offices apply for help. JFM members are also available to provide education on outreach on common legal issues and resources available across the state of Montana.
Because the need for legal representation and assistance far outweighs the resources available at MLSA, MLSA's Intake Specialists and JFM members are trained to help callers navigate the Internet and connect them with lots of free information, interactive forms, community resources, court information and pro se (self help) packets.
In 2012, MLSA's HelpLine averaged 513 requests for help per month. Approximately 350 of those requests were by phone.