October 8, 2021
Greetings

October is a wonderful month to get involved with PLC. It is Pro Bono Month – the ABA’s Pro Bono Week is the last week of the month, from October 24 to October 30. There are trainings throughout the month, and PLC is coordinating various projects with in-house counsel, local law schools, and others to engage in pro bono work. With the Orange County Bar Association, PLC is holding a guardianship training on Monday, October 25, 2021; registration is now open.

Domestic Violence Awareness Month is also in October. PLC’s Domestic Violence declarations clinic reopened in-person at Lamoreaux in July – it is open Monday and Friday mornings, and we can always use volunteers. We also have clients in need of assistance with domestic violence restraining orders, and related family law issues like dissolution, custody, and support. We will send out details for an upcoming training in the near future.

As always, please review the case list below and reach out if you are able to help a deserving client.

PRACTICE AREAS
ADVOCACY FOR CHILDREN
No cases at this time.
APPEALS
No cases at this time.
DISABILITY RIGHTS
Furthering Fair Housing Laws, PLC 20E-1049214
Client is a person with mental health disabilities. She would like to sue a housing provider for violating federal and state fair housing laws in the renting process. Client receives a federal subsidy to rent in the private market. Although client is now stably housed, the housing provider that refused to rent to her caused her mental anguish that exacerbated her mental health condition and resulted in her hospitalization. Client seeks to file suit against the housing provider to ensure compliance with federal and state fair housing laws.

Recovering Illegally Charged Fees, PLC 21-1054061
Client resides in a mobilehome park in Orange County. She requested a reasonable accommodation from the mobilehome park. The client is agreeing to move out and is selling her mobilehome, however the park is charging her attorneys fees for her reasonable accommodation request, in violation of California law. Client seeks assistance recovering the fees illegally charged by the park.

Unlawful Detainer/Eviction Defense Cases
PLC has a number of unlawful detainer/eviction cases that involved tenants who have disabilities. In some cases the tenants have requested reasonable accommodations, but the complaints are proceeding nonetheless. Clients in these situations seek assistance with submitting and following up on complaints with the Department of Fair Employment and Housing, as well as defending unlawful detainer cases. There may also be an opportunity to file an affirmative case for discrimination, depending on the circumstances of the case.
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE SURVIVORS
Immigration​​/U-Visa, PLC 21-0060630
Client was a victim of domestic violence and she provided information about the crime to law enforcement. Client is Spanish speaking and the sole applicant.

Immigration/U-Visa, PLC 21E-1054190
Client was a victim of domestic violence by her former partner. Their child was present and witnessed the most recent incident of domestic violence. She reported the domestic violence to the police and obtained a five year domestic violence restraining order. Client has lived in the United States for about 20 years. She now seeks assistance in filing for a U-Visa as a victim of crime and is the sole applicant.
*Client is a monolingual Spanish speaker.*

Immigration/U-Visa, PLC 20-1052395
Client is in her 40s and is a single mother of two children, one of whom is a DACA recipient and another who is a U.S. citizen. She has lived in the United States for about 19 years. She suffered domestic violence consisting of physical, verbal, financial, and sexual abuse for several years at the hands of her ex-partner. She is currently in counseling and has been diagnosed with anxiety and PTSD due to the trauma she has endured. She reported the domestic violence to the police and was granted a five year domestic violence restraining order. She now seeks assistance in filing for a U-Visa as a victim of crime.
*Client is a monolingual Spanish speaker.*

Immigration/U-Visa, PLC 20-1049640
Client is a survivor of domestic violence committed by her ex-partner for several years. She sought and obtained a Domestic Violence Restraining Order against her abuser. She is a DACA recipient and now seeks assistance with filing for a U-Visa as a victim of crime. She is a bilingual English and Spanish speaker.
FINANCIAL/INCOME PROTECTION
Bankruptcy, PLC 21E-1053848
Client is a English speaker in her early 30s with approximately $20,000 in unsecured debt and approximately $5,000 in federal student loans. Client hopes that filing for bankruptcy will give her the opportunity to move on with her life and get a fresh start.

Civil Judgment Collection, PLC 21-1054211
Client is a woman in her 60s. Client has an Orange County divorce judgement containing an order for opposing party to reimburse her for “marital waste” in the amount of $105,000. Opposing party has not made any payments towards that amount. Opposing party currently lives outside of the United States but is believed to have bank accounts in the United States. Client seeks a pro bono attorney to assist with recovering from opposing party. 

Debt Collection Defense (Third Party Debt Buyer Plaintiff), ​PLC ​21E-1054092
Client is a bilingual speaker (English/Spanish) in her 60s. Client is defending herself in a debt collection case initiated by a debt buyer. Client disputes the debt and this debt buyer has a history of lacking proper documentation to prove its claims. Client filed a response and answered discovery in pro per. Client seeks assistance defending this lawsuit to relieve her emotional stress and to protect her income. Trial has not been set.

Defense for Adversary Proceeding, ​PLC ​20E-1053968
Client is an English-speaker in his 40s. Client is seeking assistance defending an adversary proceeding in bankruptcy court. Client believes this debt should not be excepted from discharge. Client has filed a response to the adversary proceeding and is seeking assistance for the remainder of the case, including mediation.
HUMAN TRAFFICKING
No cases at this time.
IMMIGRATION
Assisting Afghan Families Fleeing the Taliban
PLC is assisting families who are fleeing the Taliban in Afghanistan with Humanitarian Parole applications. PLC is seeking teams of attorney volunteers who can work together to represent a family unit, as well as interpreters who speak Dari and Pashto to help with client communication. Each application takes up to 4 hours, so teams of four or more within the same firm are ideal.

Immigration/U-Visa, PLC 21- 0060630
Client was a victim of domestic violence and she provided information about the crime to law enforcement. Client is Spanish speaking and the sole applicant.

Immigration/U-Visa, PLC 21- 0061339
Client was a victim of attempted rape and she provided information about the crime to law enforcement. Case is currently being investigate and prosecuted in Los Angeles County. Client is in her 30s and is English speaker. Client is a sole applicant

Immigration/U-Visa, PLC 21E-1054190
Client was a victim of domestic violence by her former partner. Their child was present and witnessed the most recent incident of domestic violence. She reported the domestic violence to the police and obtained a five year domestic violence restraining order. Client has lived in the United States for about 20 years. She now seeks assistance in filing for a U-Visa as a victim of crime and is the sole applicant.
*Client is a monolingual Spanish speaker.*

Immigration/U-Visa, PLC 20-1052395
Client is in her 40s and is a single mother of two children, one of whom is a DACA recipient and another who is a U.S. citizen. She has lived in the United States for about 19 years. She suffered domestic violence consisting of physical, verbal, financial, and sexual abuse for several years at the hands of her ex-partner. She is currently in counseling and has been diagnosed with anxiety and PTSD due to the trauma she has endured. She reported the domestic violence to the police and was granted a five year domestic violence restraining order. She now seeks assistance in filing for a U-Visa as a victim of crime.
*Client is a monolingual Spanish speaker.*

Immigration/U-Visa, PLC 21E-1054508
Client was a victim of domestic violence from her previous partner and she provided information about the crime to law enforcement. Client’s former partner was prosecuted for this offense. Client is 40 years old and is monolingual Spanish speaker. Client is the sole applicant.

Immigration/U-​V​isa, PLC 21E-1054011
Client is a survivor of severe domestic violence by her ex-partner. She provided a statement to law enforcement and has a domestic violence restraining order against her ex-partner. Client is seeking assistance with filing for a U-visa as a victim of this crime. She is a monolingual Spanish speaker.

Immigration/U-Visa, PLC 20-1049640
Client is a survivor of domestic violence committed by her ex-partner for several years. She sought and obtained a Domestic Violence Restraining Order against her abuser. She is a DACA recipient and now seeks assistance with filing for a U-Visa as a victim of crime. She is a bilingual English and Spanish speaker.

Immigration/U-Visa, PLC 20-1052796
Client was the victim of multiple incidents of domestic violence in the 1990s. She is in possession of several of the domestic violence restraining orders issued against the opposing party at the time. The client will need assistance in seeking and obtaining certification from OC Courts as to her helpfulness and status as a victim of a crime of domestic violence, and will then need assistance in preparing and filing her application for a U-visa. The client is a monolingual Spanish speaker.
INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY
No cases at this time.
JUSTICE FOR OLDER ADULTS
Debt Collection Defense (Third Party Debt Buyer Plaintiff), ​PLC ​21E-1054092
Client is a bilingual speaker (English/Spanish) in her 60s. Client is defending herself in a debt collection case initiated by a debt buyer. Client disputes the debt and this debt buyer has a history of lacking proper documentation to prove its claims. Client filed a response and answered discovery in pro per. Client seeks assistance defending this lawsuit to relieve her emotional stress and to protect her income. Trial has not been set.

Elder Financial Abuse, ​PLC ​21E-1054246
Client is in his 70s. During an emotionally stressful time for client, a family member took advantage of Client, resulting in the sale of Client’s home, and a loss of thousands of dollars. The family member has refused to make Client whole, which has impacted Client’s ability to support himself. Client seeks assistance in recovering these funds and protecting himself from future financial abuse by this individual.

Elder Financial Abuse,​ PLC​ 21E-1054338
Client is in her 70s. Client was approached at her home by a door-to-door salesperson to buy and install an alarm system. The salesperson pressured Client to pay for this system, despite her belief that it was unnecessary. Client was able to cancel the contract, and alarm system was ever installed. However, the salesperson has refused to return funds Client paid up front. Client would like assistance recovering these funds.

Elder Financial Abuse, PLC 20E-1051210
Client is an English speaker in her 80s. During a time when Client was receiving medical care, an individual who had been helping with household tasks obtained access to Client’s finances and appears to have taken close to $40,000.00 from Client without her knowledge or consent. Client seeks assistance recovering these funds and protecting herself from future financial abuse by this individual.

Elder Financial Abuse Affirmative Litigation and Cancellation of Void Deed, PLC 19E-1048579
Client is a monolingual Spanish speaker in her 70s. A family member recorded a deed purporting to transfer title of Client's home into the family member's name. The family member has threatened that he will remove Client from the property, which will result in Client experiencing homelessness. Client seeks assistance cancelling the deed so that she can maintain her housing. The purported grant deed does not appear to comply with the Government Code.

Homeowner's Insurance/Contractor Dispute, PLC 20E-1052643
Clients are English speakers in their early 70s. Clients are having a dispute with their insurance regarding coverage for repairs that they had done to their home. They are seeking to recover over $30,000.00 for repairs they paid for out of pocket based on an understanding that their homeowner’s insurance company would cover. In addition, Clients believe some of the costs are the responsibility of a contractor for failing to properly repair initial damage. Clients seek assistance working with their insurance company and the contractor to make themselves whole and more on with their lives.

Predatory Lending/PACE Home Improvements, PLC 19E-1047995
Client is in her 60’s and speaks Spanish. Client was solicited for so-called energy efficient home improvements by a door-to-door salesperson. Client considered the improvements, but never actually signed a contract. Without client’s understanding, the contractor financed home improvements through a tax assessment on client’s property. The contractor never started work on the project, and client was shocked to learn what happened when she received her next property tax statement. Client is seeking assistance recovering the money she paid to remove the tax assessment so she can pay back the countless friends and family who helped her raise that money.
LITIGATION — DEBT
Debt Collection Defense (Third Party Debt Buyer Plaintiff),​ PLC​ 21E-1054092
Client is a bilingual speaker (English/Spanish) in her 60s. Client is defending herself in a debt collection case initiated by a debt buyer. Client disputes the debt and this debt buyer has a history of lacking proper documentation to prove its claims. Client filed a response and answered discovery in pro per. Client seeks assistance defending this lawsuit to relieve her emotional stress and to protect her income. Trial has not been set.

Defense for Adversary Proceeding, PLC 20E-1053968
Client is an English-speaker in his 40s. Client is seeking assistance defending an adversary proceeding in bankruptcy court. Client believes this debt should not be excepted from discharge. Client has filed a response to the adversary proceeding and is seeking assistance for the remainder of the case, including mediation.
LITIGATION — FAMILY LAW
Civil Judgment Collection, PLC 21-1054211
Client is a woman in her 60s. Client has an Orange County divorce judgement containing an order for opposing party to reimburse her for “marital waste” in the amount of $105,000. Opposing party has not made any payments towards that amount. Opposing party currently lives outside of the United States but is believed to have bank accounts in the United States. Client seeks a pro bono attorney to assist with recovering from opposing party. 

Dissolution, PLC 21-1054305
Client is a Vietnamese male in his 70s in divorce proceedings. A Trial Setting Conference is scheduled for early June. The opposing party claims that Client has a retirement account and is requesting those funds be divided, but Respondent states that the retirement funds were depleted during their lengthy marriage. Opposing party is represented. Client seeks a pro bono attorney for representation in settlement negotiations or trial.
*Client speaks limited English, but has an interpreter who can assist*
LITIGATION — FEDERAL COURT
Defense for Adversary Proceeding, ​PLC ​20E-1053968
Client is an English-speaker in his 40s. Client is seeking assistance defending an adversary proceeding in bankruptcy court. Client believes this debt should not be excepted from discharge. Client has filed a response to the adversary proceeding and is seeking assistance for the remainder of the case, including mediation.
LITIGATION — PRESERVATION OF HOUSING
Elder Financial Abuse Affirmative Litigation and Cancellation of Void Deed, PLC 19E-1048579
Client is a monolingual Spanish speaker in her 70s. A family member recorded a deed purporting to transfer title of Client's home into the family member's name. The family member has threatened that he will remove Client from the property, which will result in Client experiencing homelessness. Client seeks assistance cancelling the deed so that she can maintain her housing. The purported grant deed does not appear to comply with the Government Code.

Furthering Fair Housing Laws, PLC 20E-1049214
Client is a person with mental health disabilities. Client receives a federal subsidy to rent in the private market. Although client is now stably housed, the housing provider that refused to rent to her caused her mental anguish that exacerbated her mental health condition and resulted in her hospitalization. Client seeks to file suit against the housing provider to ensure compliance with federal and state fair housing laws.

Homeowner's Insurance/Contractor Dispute, PLC 20E-1052643
Clients are English speakers in their early 70s. Clients are having a dispute with their insurance regarding coverage for repairs that they had done to their home. They are seeking to recover over $30,000.00 for repairs they paid for out of pocket based on an understanding that their homeowner’s insurance company would cover. In addition, Clients believe some of the costs are the responsibility of a contractor for failing to properly repair initial damage. Clients seek assistance working with their insurance company and the contractor to make themselves whole and more on with their lives.

Housing Discrimination, PLC 20E-1052328 & 20E-1052335
Clients are a married couple who have a Section 8 voucher. They seek to reside in a senior community, but have been discouraged from renting there. In at least one case, they were specifically declined because of their Section 8 voucher, in violation of state law. Clients would like assistance pursuing their claims of discrimination against the housing providers and their agents.

Landlord Harassment, PLC 21-0061514
Client, a single mother, and her daughter, were illegally locked out of their apartment. Client was submitting declarations regarding her inability to pay rent and was applying for emergency rental assistance. After regaining access, landlord then violently and forcibly removed Client, her daughter and their family pet from the unit. Client seeks assistance pursing damages for the illegal lockout as well as the physical and emotional damages from the assault.

Landlord Retaliation, PLC 21E-105
Client is a tenant in a local complex. Due to health concerns, Client refused fumigation and ever since then Client is being targeted by the landlord. Client believes other tenants are facing similar situations, and would like assistance advocating for her right to live in a habitable, affordable apartment.

Landlord/Tenant Disputes
Public Law Center is seeing an influx of cases relating to Landlord/Tenant disputes. Some cases involve defending unlawful detainer/eviction cases, some setting aside default judgments that have been entered, and others filing affirmative cases for habitability, discrimination, or other violations of law. Keeping people in safe and healthy housing is a priority, particularly while we are still in a pandemic. PLC is seeking attorneys interested in litigation who are willing to be contacted on short notice to assist a Public Law Center client with responsive pleadings, including answers and motions, and to provide representation in these landlord/tenant cases.

Landlord/Tenant – Illegal Eviction, PLC 20E-1050325 & 20-1050916
Clients seek to file an affirmative complaint against their landlord for an illegal eviction and damages, including emotional distress damages, stemming from their landlord’s unlawful actions after their landlord promised clients that they could return to the unit after the landlord repaired it, following clients’ requests that the landlord provide them with a habitable place to live. Clients vacated the unit and when they returned, they found the unit re-rented and their belongings gone.

Predatory Lending/PACE Home Improvements, ​PLC ​21E-1053491
Client is a monolingual Spanish speaker in her late 40s. Client obtained Property-Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing for work that was never completed on her home. All discussions related to the home "improvements" were in Spanish, and all documents related to the home "improvements" she signed were in English. As a result of the PACE assessment, Client's property taxes have increased by over $10,000 a year, an amount she is unable to pay. Client fears losing her home. Client would like assistance rescinding the contract and removing the tax assessment from her property.

Predatory Lending/PACE Home Improvements, PLC 20-1051904
Client is a monolingual Spanish speaker in her early 50s. Client obtained Property-Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing for work that was never completed on her home. All discussions related to the home "improvements" were in Spanish, and all documents related to the home "improvements" she signed were in English. As a result of the PACE assessment, Client's property taxes have increased by over $4,000 a year, an amount she is unable to pay. Client fears losing her home. Client would like assistance rescinding the contract and removing the tax assessment from her property.

Predatory Lending/PACE Home Improvements, PLC 19E-1047995
Client is in her 60’s and speaks Spanish. Client was solicited for so-called energy efficient home improvements by a door-to-door salesperson. Client considered the improvements, but never actually signed a contract. Without client’s understanding, the contractor financed home improvements through a tax assessment on client’s property. The contractor never started work on the project, and client was shocked to learn what happened when she received her next property tax statement. Client is seeking assistance recovering the money she paid to remove the tax assessment so she can pay back the countless friends and family who helped her raise that money.

Property Damage to Mobilehome, PLC 20E-1052263
Clients are seniors who, several years ago, purchased a mobilehome in a senior mobilehome park, where they had hoped to live out their retirement. After purchasing the mobilehome, the Park has had major issues that have caused significant damage to their mobilehome among other costs to the clients and a need to make claims on their insurance. These issues were not disclosed to Client prior to them purchasing the mobilehome. Clients hired an inspector who concluded that the Park's failure to maintain is the cause of the issues. The issues are now affecting the Clients’ health and they are unable to sell their mobilehome and relocate because of the concerns. Clients would like to bring an action against the Park to be compensated so that they can relocate to protect their health.
LITIGATION — PROBATE
Limited Conservatorship, PLC 21E-1054565
Client is a mother in her mid-40s who seeks to petition to be appointed as a limited conservator of her daughter who is diagnosed with a developmental disability. Daughter solely relies on her parents for medical support and aged out of minor Medi-Cal. She requires round-the-clock care with her daily living activities and is non-verbal. Daughter has an individualized program plan for life services.
*Client speaks Spanish*

Limited Conservatorship, PLC 21-0060799
Client is a mother in her early 50s who seeks to petition to be appointed as a limited conservator of her daughter who is diagnosed with a developmental and intellectual disability and will reach the age of majority in September 2021. Mother is unemployed and collaborates with her entire family to support the daily living activities of her daughter. Daughter has an individualized program plan for life services.
*Client speaks Spanish*

Limited Conservatorship, PLC 21-1054652
Client is a mother in her early 40s who is petitioning in pro per to be appointed as a limited conservator of her daughter who has several physical and mental disability diagnoses. Her daughter will reach the age of majority in September 2021. Mother receives public benefits to support her and her children.

Limited Conservatorship, PLC 20-1053020
Client is a mother in her mid-40s who seeks to petition to be appointed as a limited conservator of her daughter who is diagnosed with a disability and will reach the age of majority in October 2021. Mother is unemployed and preserves the well-being of her family through public benefits assistance. Daughter primarily depends on the client-mother for support with daily living activities and tasks, e.g., health maintenance, dressing, and personal care.
*Client speaks Spanish*

Limited Conservatorship, PLC 21E-1054382
Clients are parents who seek to petition to be appointed as a limited co-conservators of their son who is diagnosed with disabilities. Son will reach the age of majority in December 2021. Son has been receiving special education services since the age of three and primarily depends on clients-parents for support with daily living activities and tasks, because he exhibits delays in adaptive behaviors. Son has an individualized education program plan.
*Clients speak Spanish*
RACE EQUITY
No cases at this time.
REENTRY/CONVICTION RELIEF
No cases at this time.
TRANSACTIONAL
Nonprofit (Business Incubation) - Licensing Agreement, PLC 21-0061827
Client is an existing 501(c)(3) nonprofit whose mission is to provide education and incubation for low income entrepreneurs. Client seeks legal advice with preparing a Licensing Agreement for their training program.

Nonprofit (Business Incubation) - Trademark, PLC 21-0062093
Client is an existing 501(c)(3) nonprofit whose mission is to provide education and incubation for low income entrepreneurs. Client seeks legal advice and counsel with obtaining Trademark protection of the organization's name and logo.

Nonprofit (Business Incubation) - Website Policies, PLC 21-0062092
Client is an existing 501(c)(3) nonprofit whose mission is to provide education and incubation for low income entrepreneurs. Client seeks legal assistance with drafting Website Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

Nonprofit (Community Support) - Bylaws Review, PLC 21-1060864
Client is a chapter of an existing 501c3 nonprofit whose mission is to help friends and families of alcoholics. Client's board seeks legal assistance with reviewing their current bylaws.

Nonprofit (Education) - Employment Policies, PLC 21-1054411
Client is an existing 501(c)(3) nonprofit whose mission is to advance education equity. Client is revising its employment policies and seeks legal assistance with ensuring that its new policies procedures are in compliance with federal and state law.

Nonprofit (Education) - Employment Policies Advice & Counsel, PLC 21-1054412
Client is an existing 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization whose mission is to empower youth and strengthen communities through traditional and nontraditional educational and strengthen communities through traditional and nontraditional educational opportunities. Client seeks legal advice and counsel with reviewing its current employment manual and other policies.

Small Business - Contract Review, PLC 21-0061516
Client is a low-income resident of a mixed residential and business use property. Client seeks legal guidance with reviewing a proposed contract with her HOA relating to common area modifications in order to ensure her potential business will be ADA compliant.
VETERANS
No cases at this time.
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