On Tuesday, July 17, 2012, the Supreme Court of Ohio launched an expanded news program – Court News Ohio – that features stories about the Ohio judicial system. This archived page on the Supreme Court’s website only displays news stories that occurred before that date. News stories that occurred on July 17 and thereafter can be found at www.courtnewsohio.gov.

Oct. 25, 2011
Week of Events Highlights Pro Bono Week

Legal aid societies, bar associations and law schools across Ohio are hosting events this week where lawyers volunteer their time to help those in need of legal services.

The 2011 National Pro Bono Celebration began Sunday and will end Saturday.

Developed by the American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on Pro Bono and Public Service, the week also showcases the great difference that pro bono lawyers make to the nation’s system of justice, individual communities and their clients.

Supreme Court of Ohio Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor serves as honorary state chair. On Friday, she addressed a statewide biannual gathering of judges and attorneys involved in the Ohio State Bar Association’s Judicially Led Appellate District Pro Bono Project. In addition, Supreme Court Justice Yvette McGee Brown conducted a one-hour continuing legal education training session on professionalism for pro bono attorneys on Monday at the Legal Aid Society of Columbus.

More than 40 events are planned across the state and include free events where people who cannot afford a lawyer may obtain legal advice and referrals on topics including bankruptcy, child support and divorce.

Other events promise free continuing education courses to any lawyer who agrees to accept a pro bono case or free training sessions for pro bono lawyers handling pro bono cases in specific subject areas such as elder law, sealing a criminal record, and legal considerations for the terminally ill.

In partnership with the Ohio Legal Assistance Foundation, the Court quantifies how much pro bono work occurs in Ohio through an annual anonymous and voluntary request. In early 2012, the Court will ask attorneys to participate again to gather data for 2011.

Data for 2010 showed a 45 percent increase in pro bono hours compared to 2009, and the most in the three years the statistics have been collected.

View general information on the pro bono celebration or a complete list of Ohio events.