For lower-income residents who can't afford legal services, the Mississippi Volunteer Lawyer's Project provides free legal services clinics and representation through more than 1,800 lawyers who volunteer their time and services.
On June 17, MVLP will host a free legal clinic that will prepare wills and expungements for citizens of Hinds, Rankin and Madison counties.
"Wills are important because you need to protect your family and you want your family to be taken care," MVLP Administrative Coordinator Kristen Beal said. "Expungements are important as well, because if you commit a crime it makes it more difficult to find a job."
Beal added, however, that there are restrictions for expunging records. Crimes that can be expunged include first-time misdemeanor and drug offenses. Beal said she encouraged people to attend the clinic where experienced lawyers will be available to answer questions.
In addition to legal clinics, MVLP also helps people obtain legal assistance, screening potential clients for income eligibility and legal merit. If the client qualifies, the project matches them with a lawyer and pays for litigation expenses for witnesses, subpoenas, filing fees and depositions. The project also has a legal line citizens can call to get legal questions answered for free.
The MVLP free legal clinic is June 17, from 4:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at Blacks Chapel Church (3425 Robinson Street). The service for filing expungments is free, but the court filing fee is $35. For more information about MLVP or to donate call 601-960-9577 or go online. Call 601-960-9572 for the legal help line.
This is WONDERFUL! My hat goes off to Black's Chapel Church. I know a few members there and it is good to see that this type of help is being given to the community. So many people get messed up with not having proper documents and official documentation of what they want to see happen.