Advocating for Financial Rights
The Legal Aid Society’s specialized teams of attorneys, paralegals, and support staff advocate for the financial rights of New Yorkers in three distinct, yet interrelated, legal fields: consumer law and debt collection, tax law, and business development/job creation.
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Every day, in courthouses and communities across the city, we advocate for the rights of all New Yorkers. Learn more about the services we provide.
Ensuring Financial Wellbeing in the Consumer Law Unit
In and out of the courtroom, Staff Attorneys from our Consumer Law Project and Health Law Unit help New Yorkers with financial and healthcare challenges so they can overcome them and thrive.
Expanding Access to Legal Representation Through Tax Advocates
The Society’s Low Income Taxpayer Clinic works tirelessly to improve the experience of taxpayers under both the Federal and State tax laws and to ensure the fairness and integrity of the tax system with regard low-income and ESL taxpayers. One way we do so is by partnering with skilled pro bono tax advocates in order to expand access to legal representation.
In 2015, we built on our relationship with the law firm of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, which had frequently accepted cases for pro bono representation before the IRS. We partnered with them on an Offer In Compromise (OIC) Project where partners, associates, and other members of the firm provide direct representation to our clients in tax settlement cases. This collaboration allows the LITC to increase its reach in the community, gives low-income taxpayers an opportunity to fully access free and high quality legal services, and increases the private bar’s involvement in our communities.
From 2015 to 2018, Skadden attorneys volunteered an average of over 900 hours annually on those tax cases.
By the Numbers
On a daily basis, the Low Income Taxpayer Clinic assists with eliminating burdensome federal and state tax debt, the Community Development Project advocates for small business owners, nonprofit organizations, and HDFCs, and the Consumer Law Project defends against unfair debt collection practices.
Tax liabilities eliminated by the Low Income Taxpayer Clinic.
Individuals benefited by the Community Development Project.
Of clients successfully lowered their debt as a result of intervention by our the Consumer Law Project.
A contribution to The Legal Aid Society is about more than money.
Every donation helps us offer essential legal services to thousands of vulnerable New Yorkers, helping people buy food, pay rent, and care for themselves and their families.