HALT’s Legal Access Project is designed to stimulate and inform public policy debates regarding the right to speak and write about the U.S. legal system and how it functions. This project seeks to reform state court rules and statutes that prohibit the “unauthorized practice of law” and to expand the alternatives available for legal consumers.
Although millions of low and moderate income Americans are priced out of the civil justice system simply because they cannot afford a lawyer, many state bar associations, courts and district attorneys are currently misusing unauthorized practice of law rules to attack inexpensive alternatives to hiring a lawyer, including legal document preparers, legal self-help publishers and volunteers and online legal service providers.
Through our Legal Access Project work, we seek to reform the lawyer’s monopoly on legal services through advocacy before bar associations, legislatures and courts. We also seek to educate consumers of legal services about their rights in finding and using the legal assistance most appropriate for their needs.