Frequently Asked Questions

Click the questions below to view their answers:

Are LegalCORPS services limited to the Twin Cities area?
After I submit my application how long will it take to get an attorney?
If my case is not placed will I receive a refund of the $50 administrative fee?
What if limited proficiency in English poses a barrier?
Why does the LegalCORPS application for full-representation assistance require so much documentation?
What happens once my nonprofit’s matter is placed with an attorney?
How often can my nonprofit use LegalCORPS services?
Why do you want to know whether I have worked with another attorney on this legal matter?
Why don’t you provide services to start-up nonprofits in the Twin Cities metro area?
What happens if I want to work with the same attorney after my organization is no longer eligible for LegalCORPS services?


Are LegalCORPS services limited to the Twin Cities area?

No, LegalCORPS assists small businesses and nonprofit organizations throughout Minnesota. It is a statewide organization.

 

After I submit my application how long will it take to get an attorney?

The answer will differ for every client, depending on factors that include the nature of the case, attorney availability, the presence of conflicts of interest, and the number of other cases awaiting placement.

LegalCORPS cannot guarantee that a case will be placed but will make a good faith effort to find representation for an eligible client.

Although placement often takes place within a week after LegalCORPS posts a pro bono opportunity with its volunteer attorneys, the placement process can take weeks.

If a matter is time-sensitive (for instance, it has a deadline) LegalCORPS will attempt to expedite the search process.

 

If my case is not placed will I receive a refund of the $50 administrative fee?

Yes.

 

What if limited proficiency in English poses a barrier?

LegalCORPS does not have ready access to interpreters.   However, LegalCORPS can try to arrange an intrepreter’s services when circumstances call for them.

LegalCORPS plans to eventually provide materials in additional languages on this website.

 

Why does the LegalCORPS application for full-representation assistance require so much documentation?

The LegalCORPS application process is thorough in order to ensure that the client receives the appropriate service, the attorney understands the nature of the case and the client’s economic situation, and to avoid conflicts of interest that may prevent representation by a particular attorney.

Knowing the full story enables LegalCORPS to make a fair assessment of eligibility and find the best match possible. (Also, some of LegalCORPS’s funders require it to follow low-income guidelines.)

If a client applies for a second time to LegalCORPS it may not be necessary for the client to send in all of the same materials as before because everything from the first application is kept on file. It is the client’s responsibility, however, to ensure that LegalCORPS has the most up-to-date information in its files.

 

What happens once my nonprofit’s matter is placed with an attorney?

You will be notified of the attorney’s name and contact information. You should contact your attorney and to be available to your attorney at all times. Effective legal representation relies upon the active involvement and participation of the client. Return your attorney’s calls, show up for appointments (or reschedule when you have a conflict), and provide all requested information in a timely manner. Communication and cooperation are key to a successful attorney-client relationship.

 

How often can my nonprofit use LegalCORPS services?

So long as your organization is eligible for LegalCORPS and you present appropriate legal issues you may continue to receive our services.

 

Why do you want to know whether I have worked with another attorney on this legal matter?

As part of the legal community, LegalCORPS respects the professional relationships attorneys enter with their clients. If you have worked with an attorney on the same or similar legal issue you are presenting to LegalCORPS, we will notify the attorney and ensure that there is no barrier to LegalCORPS providing representation. We will obtain your permission before contacting the attorney.

 

Why don’t you provide services to start-up nonprofits in the Twin Cities metro area?

Other technical assistance organizations assist start-up nonprofit organizations in the metropolitan area.  LegalCORPS does not want to duplicate their efforts.

LegalCORPS will consider requests for assistance with starting a nonprofit from applicants who reside well outside the Twin Cities metropolitan area.

If you are not sure whether you should apply to LegalCORPS or seek guidance from a management assistance organization, please call LegalCORPS anyway. We can review the facts of your situation and provide referrals, if needed. This website also provides links to several organizations providing management assistance and consulting.

 

What happens if I want to work with the same attorney after my organization is no longer eligible for LegalCORPS services?

LegalCORPS determines a client’s eligibility each time the client applies for assistance. LegalCORPS matches attorneys with clients for each new application. For each attorney-client match LegalCORPS makes, the lawyer and client makes a new client representation agreement. It is a good practice to formalize this representation through your own retainers and letters of representation as well.

LegalCORPS understands that attorney-client relationships often build over time, and that an attorney and client might want to continue to work together. They certainly can do so through LegalCORPS, as long as the client meets eligibility criteria. Once a client is no longer eligible for LegalCORPS services, the attorney and client are free to continue their relationship without the involvement of LegalCORPS.