Legal FACS

Legal FACS

Legal FACS is a New Mexico-based legal services non-profit organization which provides free and low cost legal services to low-income persons with civil legal problems. The organization provides volunteer attorneys for #REDIRECT pro se cases, direct representation in some matters, and volunteer attorneys and advocates who give information and forms to self-represented litigants and victims of domestic violence .

The organization's stated mission is "to provide access to justice for children and families by empowering and educating indigent civil litigants and victims of domestic violence with legal assistance and social support". [http://legalfacs.org/mission.htm LegalFACS: Mission and Facts ] ]

History of Legal FACS

Legal FACS was established in 1971 as the Legal Services Corporation, and then called the Albuquerque Bar Volunteer Lawyers Office. For its first 20 years, Legal FACS acted as a pro-bono referral agency, directing individual clients to volunteer attorneys for representation. In the 1990s, launched the Courthouse Lawyer Service (CLS) or "Booth", as it was then known, was launched to serve people with domestic relations and domestic violence issues. This involved volunteer attorneys working out of court donated space to assist low income litigants.

The CLS structure empowers people and teaches them to help themselves through some of the most difficult issues they will face in their lifetime. CLS volunteer attorneys meet individually with litigants and provide them with forms and instructions on how to proceed in their case. In 1999, the format expanded into Metropolitan Court to assist low income litigants in small claims and landlord/tenant disputes. Domestic violence victims receive individual counseling or direct representation, which often prevents victims from dismissing their cases because of fear or intimidation by abusers or the system. The Forms Clinic, also introduced in 1999, allows low income litigants to meet individually with a paralegal or student and learn how to complete and file their cases. Today Legal FACS has a staff of qualified attorneys who will also provide limited and full representation to victims of domestic violence in Bernalillo, Sandoval, Torrance and Valencia Counties.

Legal FACS is located in the Simms Building in downtown Albuquerque.

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