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Become a Volunteer Attorney

Answers to Frequently Asked Questions for attorneys who are looking to assist low-income and disadvantaged people by providing pro bono services.

How do I make a financial donation to CMLS?

Central Minnesota Legal Services can take donations online by credit card through or PayPal Donations.  Alternatively, may prefer to mail-in or phone in your donation.

For phone donations, contact Pat O'Neill at (612) 332-8151

To mail in a donation, make your payment payable to Central Minnesota Legal Services and mail to:

Central Minnesota Legal Services
430 First Avenue North
Suite 359
Minneapolis, MN 55401-1780

What's in it (pro bono service) for me?

  • Increased knowledge of practice area;
  • Broadening of legal knowledge and skills;
  • Improved standing in the legal community;
  • Acquisition of practical experience (particularly for new attorneys); and/or
  • Adherence to the Rule of Professional Conduct.

What types of pro bono services does Central Minnesota Legal Services need?

 There are many opportunities for pro bono service at Central Minnesota Legal Services.  In your discussion with your CMLS coordinator, please be creative regarding the types of services you and/or your firm may be able to provide.  Types of pro bono services might include:

  • Assume responsibility for a client case;
  • Serve as co-counsel for a client case;
  • Serve with a team of attorneys on a community project;
  • Provide consulting advice to CMLS attorneys in your specialty area;
  • Encourage your law firm staff to perform pro bono service;
  • Encourage your law firm to provide a full-time "loaned" staff attorney to a CMLS office for six months or more;
  • Provide leadership for a new pro bono project for CMLS.

What types of cases can be handled by pro bono attorneys?

  Potential clients of Central Minnesota Legal Services are typically low-income persons who have legal needs in civil matters, such as credit and consumer fraud, landlord/tenant problems, child custody, domestic violence, divorce, public benefits and employment law issues.  Your CMLS coordinator will work with you to ensure that you are comfortable with any referral that is sent to you.