In the month of March, Pine Tree Legal received 808 calls for help!

Crisis situations are usually sudden, unexpected, alarming,

and can be life-threatening.

Just as emergency room staff work to trigae health crises, our intake team are the first responders for Mainers facing civil legal problems that threaten their health, families, and livelihoods.

Our compassionate advocates are committed to

providing the best care, on our clients’ worst days.

During intake hours, we listen to learn about the callers’ concerns and needs. After a detailed intake conversation, callers get an answer to know if Pine Tree can represent them or provide individualized legal advice, and if not, they get a referral or other information.

A difficult percentage of callers cry at some point during their calls. Some people are crying because they have to be in court in a few days and they do not know what is going to happen to them and their families. Some people cry tears of relief when we say we can take their case, while others cry when we give the unfortunate news that we cannot help them. That can happen for a variety of reasons, including that they have a legal issue we cannot address. But sometimes, it happens because our staff is fully booked and cannot take on another case.

In 32% of the 7,582 cases we handled during 2022, we had to provide a more limited degree of legal service than the client wanted.

This does not include the callers whose cases we had to decline entirely.  


Answering phone call after phone call with compassion and stamina is challenging work. This work requires detailed knowledge of the law to identify issues so that clients can receive advice and guidance and Pine Tree can prioritize cases for transfer. It requires extensive communication skills so that information can be exchanged efficiently and effectively with the people calling in who bring with them varied experiences, understanding, and expectations. It requires deep compassion for all humans and commitment to access to justice. And then, as all of those skills are being balanced, intake is our first check on compliance issues like conflicts and eligibility.

We are beyond fortunate to have such a talented, hard-working and deeply dedicated intake team at Pine Tree doing this work for us and bringing these skills to our callers.

We simply could not do this work without you.

Your support to vulnerable Mainers provides endless access to justice.


calls were made to our intake line last year from people seeking representation.

(An increase of 180% compared to 2019!)

On the other end of that call, is one of your neighbors.

A neighbor with a story of hardship, a will to preserve.

And a legal aid advocate. Dedicated to help them get justice.

please donate today.

Subscribe to become an Enduring Advocate TODAY! 
Support the Campagin for Justice

Why did you want to work at Pine Tree? What brought you to Pine Tree and what did you do before?

  • I was a paralegal at a small, private employment law firm and I wanted to transition to a role more focused on serving the public. My dad and several friends from high school went to Colby, so I knew about the area from them. Vermont is basically a better Maine (jk jk), so it felt like a good fit!

What do you like to study/learn about?

  • I love to learn about new cultures and languages - I've lived in three different countries and traveled to many more (pre Covid). One day, I'd like to get my Master's in Public Policy.

If you could pick one song to play every time you enter a room, what would it be?

  • Can it be the Harry Potter theme song, but a pirated version so JKR doesn't receive royalties?

If you could have one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?

  • Tacos or potatoes. I have tattoos of both.

If you could learn to do anything, what would it be?

  • Sing and dance; I'm tone deaf and have no rhythm, which feels like a crime.

What was the first thing you bought with your own money?

  • I actually negotiated getting my ears pierced and paid for it myself. My mom had said I had to wait until I was 13 because she didn't trust me to take care of them. I proposed that I would get them pierced at 11 with my own money and if I didn't take care of them, I had to take them out and wait until I was 13 to get them re-pierced. Now I have 10+ piercings and work as a paralegal and my mom regrets everything.

What does justice mean to you?

  • So many different things, but I think of John Rawls' "Veil of Ignorance" and its associated principles most closely align with my personal definition of justice.

Meet Shannon's Pets 🐾

Tell us about your pets!

  • Don't have to ask me twice! My dog's name is Arrow; he's a 3.5 year old rescue dog who is a giant 90 lb baby. He throws a fit if my cats are on my lap and has the most adorable freckled belly. I have two cats named Ollie and Charlie who are adopted as well. Charlie is a weird little brat and I love him more than anything. Ollie is a cat running on dog software - he loves belly rubs, plays fetch, comes when he's called, and drools.




Welcome to the team, Shannon!

We're so happy to have you!

Check out our pictures from

Trivia Night for Justice

at Rising Tide Brewing!

Sad you missed it? (We missed you, too!)

Gather-up a team and come see us at the next one!

Buy Tickets Now!

Click below to follow Pine Tree Legal today!

Instagram        Facebook        Web        YouTube        LinkedIn