What do I do if I've been in an accident? How do I get a will? What steps do I take if I want to change a child custody arrangement? Many of these questions can be answered through a quick conversation with an attorney, but getting legal advice can be intimidating for many individuals.
The Indianapolis Bar Association has responded to the growing need for legal assistance in the community by expanding its free legal advice programs into a virtual chat service manned daily by attorney volunteers. Through the Virtual Ask a Lawyer program, individuals can chat in real time with an attorney who is prepared to assist with basic legal questions. The service, regularly available from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays, will be available for extended hours through 8 p.m. on Tuesday, June 8.
To begin the chat, individuals simply visit indybar.org/chat. Once on the page, a pop-up in the lower right hand corner of the browser window will guide the user through the interaction. Outside of normal business hours, or in the event that an attorney isn’t available, members of the community can provide their email address for follow up by an attorney within 12 to 24 hours. For individuals without access to the internet, phone-based assistance is also available from 6-8 p.m. on June 8 by calling 317-269-2000.
Lawyers participating in Virtual Ask a Lawyer work in law firms, agencies and organizations throughout the city and are donating their time in order to provide this valuable community service. They'll be prepared to provide assistance with questions on topics like divorce, child custody, child support, landlord/tenant issues, bankruptcy, personal injury, employment law and more. All correspondence is confidential.
For individuals with greater legal needs, the association operates Indy Lawyer Finder, an online and call-in lawyer referral service. Indy Lawyer Finder features lawyers who are pre-screened and who adhere to a high standard of professionalism. The online portal at indylawyerfinder.com can be accessed 24/7, while calls are taken Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., at (317) 269-2222.
About Indianapolis Bar Association Pro Bono Programs
These community services are sponsored by the Indianapolis Bar Association, a 143-year-old organization of Indianapolis area attorneys, judges, paralegals and law students, and are made possible through the generosity of the Indianapolis Bar Foundation, the charitable arm of the association. For additional information on a variety of other legal advice and assistance programs offered throughout the year by the association, visit indybar.org/legaladvice.