Pro Bono Cases of the Month
Pro Bono Cases of the Month reflect one or more of the many requests for help from clients in desperate need through the Rhode Island Bar Association’s Volunteer Lawyer Program (VLP), Elderly Program or U.S. Armed Forces Legal Services Project. VLP, funded through a grant from Rhode Island Legal Services, Inc. and the Rhode Island Bar Foundation, provides pro bono legal services to qualified low-income Rhode Islanders. Participating attorneys provide legal assistance, at no charge. The client’s income must qualify under federally regulated guidelines to receive pro bono assistance, and the case must fall under one of the areas of law handled by the VLP. Clients may be responsible for filing fees, court costs and other out-of-pocket expenses.


Resident of North Providence, who is a cancer survivor, is 8-9 months behind on her mortgage. She also has $22K in unsecured debt. She would like to retain her home if possible. She has had a modification and her current mortgage payment is $500/month. She is currently working and also receives food stamps. If you would like to assist with this case, please contact Volunteer Lawyer Program Coordinator, John Ellis at 401 421 7758 or Thank you very much.

Visitation- September 3rd, Providence Family Court

Client is mother of 5 year old child. She is being taken into court by the child’s father for joint placement/visitation. She says that the father is asking to have the child for 2 weeks every month. She is very concerned about this because, she claims, that the father is a drug dealer and is abusive. She received a 1 year restraining order against him in April of 2015. On the day of the RO case the client was beat up by the father’s friend and sister (both were arrested). So, the client has her concerns about her child being around the father and his family in general. If you would like to assist with this case, please contact Volunteer Lawyer Program Coordinator, John Ellis at 401 421 7758 or Thank you very much.

Cranston, Collections/ID Theft – US Armed Forces Legal Services

The client was solicited by Barclay Bank with a 2% interest credit card rate and transferred her BOA credit card to them. Upon receiving further clarification, and a card from Barclay Bank (which included checks), the client realized that her interest rate would actually be 9% and called them to cancel the card. At the time of the call, the client was told to send the card and checks back to the attention of a particular individual. Upon receipt, someone within Barclay then fraudulently cashed a check for 18K (the client has a copy of check.) The client has filed a complaint with the AG/CFP Bureau, but continues to get collection calls from Barclay. The client is a Korean War Veteran widow. If you are interested in learning more about and/or taking this case through the US Armed Forces Legal Services Project, please contact Elisa King, Program Coordinator at (401) 521-5040 or via email at