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					     ASB VOLUNTEER LAWYERS PROGRAM • 16 YEAR ANNIVERSARY




           A LARGE FIRM            TA K E S O N                        PRO BONO:

     Maynard Cooper & Gale’s
     Pro Bono Divorce Clinic
                                     BY MAIBETH J. PORTER




                      O
                                 n September 27 and 28, Maynard         for the filing fees to the clinic. Many of the
                                 Cooper & Gale conducted its first      clients had been separated from their
                                 Pro Bono Divorce Clinic.               spouses for years, but had only felt the
                      Nineteen attorneys participated and met           need for a divorce relatively recently.
                      with 22 clients, who previously had been              The lawyers who participated noted a
                      screened by Legal Services Alabama. The           profound sense of accomplishment in
                      purpose of the clinic was to help relieve         helping an individual client, who, without
                      Legal Services’ backlog of clients who            the lawyer, would have remained in need.
                      desired uncontested divorces without chil-            Maynard, Cooper plans other pro
                      dren. The other purpose was to allow the          bono divorce clinics as well as a seminar
                      attorneys at Maynard, Cooper, who serve           on landlord/tenant law to be followed by
                      mainly corporate clients, to learn the skills     a clinic.                                   ■
                      to fulfill their obligation to provide pro
                      bono services. Domestic relations attor-
                      neys from Legal Services were on site to                                    Maibeth J. Porter
                      answer questions, as were Linda Lund,                                        Maibeth J. Porter is a founding
                                                                                                   member and shareholder of
                      director of the Volunteer Lawyer Program                                     Maynard Cooper & Gale PC. She
                      for the ASB, and Deborah Jenkins, Linda’s                                    currently serves on the Board of
                      counterpart in Birmingham.                                                   Directors of the Birmingham Bar
                                                                                                   Foundation and has served on
                          Several months prior to the clinic, LSA                                  the Board of Directors of the
                      conducted a two-hour seminar regarding                                       Birmingham Bar Association.
                      divorce law.                                         Porter was president of the BBA in 2003 and is a
                                                                           member of the ASB Board of Bar Commissioners. She
                          At the clinic, clients’ circumstances var-
                                                                           has served on the ASB Character and Fitness
                      ied. Some qualified to request waivers of            Committee, which she also chaired. Porter is a member
                      filing fees and submitted affidavits of              of the Supreme Court of Alabama’s Standing Committee
                      hardship. Others, who had waited months              on the Alabama Rules of Civil Procedure.

                      to file for divorce, brought money orders

50    JANUARY 2007

				
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