April 7, 2017

(From Left to Right) Balch & Bingham attorneys Kathy Collier, Chris Yeilding, Marcus Chatterton, and Hansen Babington volunteering at one of the Help Desks for the BBVLP. 


The Birmingham office of Balch & Bingham has been a significant partner of the Birmingham Bar Volunteer Lawyers Program (BBVLP) for over 10 years, dedicated to providing pro bono legal advice and services to those in need in the Birmingham Metropolitan area.

Read about some of their great work below:

Bruce Barze and Katie Hill volunteered to help a client who was cheated out of her security deposit. A client paid her landlord $1,230.00 as a deposit on an apartment that would specifically accommodate the client who is disabled. On her move-in date, the landlord provided a home that did not accommodate her needs. With help from Bruce and Katie, the client received a full refund on her deposit.

John G. Smith, Mike Edwards, and Adam Israel have been working on a pro bono death penalty appeal case for the past 8 years.

Christopher Yeilding has helped a pro bono client recover more than $20,000.00 in unpaid wages and remains active in helping his client receive payments from other outstanding accounts.
Hansen Babington recently helped a client who was being evicted from her apartment. Despite the client's numerous requests, her landlord failed to make repairs to maintain a habitable living space for the client. Hansen helped the client write a 14-day Notice to her landlord, compelling her landlord to remedy the situation.

Steven Corhern took on an extended representation after working at the BBVLP help desk in October 2016. The client had outstanding traffic tickets in several states and an outstanding felony warrant in California that was over 15 years old. Working with the Los Angeles Public Defender, Steven was able to get the felony charge dropped to a misdemeanor and dismissed, thus, clearing it off the client's record so that he could get a state-issued ID.

Alex Flachsbart has worked with the United Way of Central Alabama on two major regulatory actions by the Department of Revenue. First, Alex helped the United Way draft comments (and, ultimately, alternative rules) to the ADOR proposals implementing new sales tax exemption-related reporting rules that could have wreaked havoc on the United Way's statewide network. Second, Alex helped them draft comments to (and, ultimately, an alternative version of) an ADOR-supported bill that dealt with community chest organizations like UWCA.

William Sellers has handled 3 pro bono tax matters this year. All were collection related matters, and Will was able to stop the IRS from taking active collection action. One case in particular that is still on-going is of note. The taxpayer was said to owe over $1 million in taxes. It was probably due to identity theft, but since the matter was over 6 years ago, they couldn't re-open the case. The taxpayer makes $12.50 an hour and was having 25% of his wages garnished. Will was able to convince the IRS that the taxpayer didn't owe the money so the IRS removed the garnishment, and some of the money should be refunded.

Collectively, Balch lawyers have contributed more than 500 volunteer hours assisting low-income and other pro bono clients statewide in the last 12 months. Balch & Bingham had attorneys volunteer at Project Homeless Connect in Birmingham on March 4, 2017. The firm also has attorneys regularly volunteer at BBVLP's Bankruptcy Help Desk, Civil Help Desk, Domestic Relations Help Desk, Homeless Help Desk, and Veterans Help Desk. Below you will find a list of just some of the attorneys from Balch & Bingham who have volunteered this year in a variety of pro bono efforts including for the BBVLP and other pro bono matters statewide. 

Hansen Babington Bruce Barze
Kimberly Bell

 Stan Blanton

Marcus Chatterton

Kathy Collier

Gregory Cook

Steven Corhern

Thomas DeBray

Tom DeLawrence

Alexander Flachsbart

Jeremiah Glassford

Paul Greenwood

Ed Haden

Kerra Hicks

Katie Hill

Jonathan Hoffman

 Adam Israel
Lee Johnsey
Doug Kauffman

Cavender Kimble

Todd Lowther

Martha Legg Miller

Brad Neighbors

Phillip Nichols

Katy Ottensmeyer

Kelly Pate

Chelsea Phillips 

John Pickering

 Jeremy Retherford

Alan Rogers

Christina Rossi

William Satterfield

William Sellers

Michael Taunton

Spence Taylor

Jesse Vogtle

Christopher Yeilding

1.  Please help this grandmother file for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy 

Client states that due to health issues she has been unable to make payments on her debt. She informed the BBVLP that the majority of her money is spent on food and medication. (17-0007801)

*This is the third time in eBrief*

2. T his verbally abused woman needs help with her divorce

Her alcoholic spouse has abandoned the client leaving her with all the home expenses. Please help this woman protect her assets by helping her navigate through her divorce process. 

*This is the third time in eBrief

3. Please help this mother of four children through her divorce process

This client's spouse abandoned the family several months ago and has not supported the family since. The spouse's income was their only means of support. Please help this mother navigate the court system. (17-0007692)

*This is the fourth time in eBrief
Click  here to volunteer at a Help Desk! We are seeking volunteers for all of 2017 and for the following dates in the next weeks:

Katherine West, Burr & Forman, volunteers at the Homeless Help Desk. 
Fob James, Burr & Forman, talks to a client at the Homeless Help Desk.

Civil Help Desk:
Monday 04/10/2017
8:30 am - 10:00 am
10:00 am - 12:00 pm

Monday 04/17/2017
10:00 am - 12:00 pm

Pro Se Docket:
Thursday 04/27/2017 
9:00 am - 12:00 pm
Domestic Relations Help Desk:
Wednesday 04/12/2017
8:30 am - 10:00 am
10:00 am - 12:00 pm

Wednesday 04/19/2017
8:30 am - 10:00 am
10:00 am - 12:00 pm

Mary Leesa Booth, Healthsouth Corporation
Lindsey Cochran, Burr & Forman
James Gibson, Lightfoot Franklin & White
Sam Grimes, Burr & Forman
James Illston, Merrell Law
Fob James, Burr & Forman
Kendra Johnson
Leon Johnson
Louis Mendez , Bressler Amery & Ross
Andrew Schilder, Healthsouth Corporation
Sarah Yates, Bressler Amery & Ross
Katherine West , Burr & Forman
David Webster, Legal Services of Alabama

Jessica Chang, Cumberland School of Law
Melissa Doggett 

Melissa agreed to assist a client whose spouse is incarcerated.

Courtney Brown Dubberly
Sandi Eubank Gregory

Courtney took a divorce case from the Domestic Relations Pro Se Docket.
Honora Gathings
Gathings Law

Honora agreed to help a veteran through his divorce case.

Stephanie Hunter
Hunter Law Firm

Stephanie agreed to help a couple who is being wrongfully evicted.
Preston Martin
Bressler Amery & Ross

Preston volunteered to help an elderly client create a will and power of attorney.

Louis Mendez
Bressler Amery & Ross 

Louis volunteered to help a client who is trying to collect on a judgment.

Michelle Pieroni
Huie Fernambucq Stewart  

Michelle volunteered to help a veteran who is currently having problems with his time share property.

Lisa Robinson

Lisa volunteered to help a client with a divorce.

Whitney Seals
Pate & Cochrun

Whitney volunteered to help a client with a 3rd party creditor lawsuit.

Debra Krotzer
Carr Allison

Debra helped parties through their uncontested divorce case. The client stated, "Ms. Krotzer's representation was great and helped me with no hesitation."

Donations from the community are the number one funding source for the Volunteer Lawyer Program.  Click here to donate.

There are two ways attorneys can choose to help with the Volunteer Lawyer Program. Click here for what you can do.

Only clients who cannot afford representative are served by the BBVLP. Click  here to see eligibility guidelines.