Making Justice Real

The Official Blog of the Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia

Nov 17

2014

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Legal Aid Client Avoids Debt Collection Injustice

Last spring, Mr. Lara, a monolingual Spanish-speaker, appeared in court for a debt collection case in which the creditor was seeking almost $10,000. Through an interpreter, he tried to explain to the judge that he thought he had already resolved the issue. Mr. Lara said he had reached an agreement to settle the debt for $3,000, and indeed, he had already paid $2,200 of that amount. The judge continued the hearing so that the plaintiff could investigate. Read more →

Oct 31

2014

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Legal Aid and Others File Lawsuit to Help Tenants Stay in Their Homes

Yesterday, the Museum Square Tenants Association filed a lawsuit against the owner of their apartment complex in an effort to preserve affordable housing in the building, which has 302 units for low-income D.C. residents. Legal Aid is proud to represent the tenant association along with the Asian Pacific American Legal Resource Center, and the law firm of Arnold & Porter LLP. The suit claims that the owner’s offer to sell the property for $250 million is not a “bona fide offer of sale” under the Tenant Opportunity to Purchase ActRead more →

Oct 28

2014

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Jodi Feldman To Receive WCL’s First-Ever Legal Services Award

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Jodi Feldman, Supervising Attorney for Legal Aid’s Pro Bono and Training Programs

Legal Aid is proud to announce that the head of our Pro Bono and Training Programs, Jodi Feldman, will be the recipient of the Washington Council of Lawyers’ inaugural Legal Services Award, which recognizes the outstanding work of the lawyers who serve in the public-interest community.

Jodi is more than deserving of this recognition as she has dedicated the vast majority of her career to public service – the last 13-plus years of it specifically to ensuring greater access to justice for individuals and families living in poverty in the District of Columbia. Read more →

Oct 17

2014

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Legal Aid’s New Foreclosure Prevention Project

Foreclosure imageI am very excited to have joined Legal Aid’s Consumer Law Unit as an Equal Justice Works Fellow last month.  My project, which is sponsored by Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld, LLP, focuses on providing assistance to low-income homeowners facing foreclosure in the District of Columbia.

My project comes at a very opportune time.  In March 2014, new procedures were implemented affecting homeowners who have been sued for foreclosure in D.C. Superior Court.  Specifically, early mediation was added as an initial step in judicial foreclosure cases, offering homeowners the chance to sit down with their lenders and discuss the possibility of loan modifications or other alternatives to foreclosure.  Read more →

Oct 10

2014

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New Report Paints Bleak Picture for D.C. Affordable Housing

This week, the Urban Institute issued the latest chapter in its report, “Our Changing City,” illustrating how Washington, D.C. has changed over the past decade. The report describes how the influx of new residents, particularly “millennials,” is altering the city’s demographic picture, its services, and its institutions. Read more →