Low Bono Mediation

Project Name: Low bono mediation for one or more child in need
Cost: $1,750 per mediation, incrementally, i.e., $1,750, $3,500, $5,250, etc.
Recurring?: No.
Description: Some contributors may wish to provide funding that will provide a direct benefit to a particular child in need. This project is intended to provide that opportunity.

Our Low Bono program provides reduced fee legal services to parents of children with disabilities who meet our (not stringent by pro bono standards) income eligibility requirements. These requirements are that the family’s total income must be lower than the median family income for their town, their county, or their state.   This means that a client may be low-bono eligible even if they make over six figures, i.e., if they live in an affluent town and make less than the median for that town.

But sometimes such families, although not income qualified for pro bono services, cannot afford even to pay reduced-fees for legal services.   In such cases, if they have a meritorious case and can afford to pay for their own expenses (especially experts), sometimes we can identify counsel who will represent them in a trial solely for prevailing party fees (getting nothing if they lose).

But this still leaves a demographic out in the cold.   Specifically, parents who cannot afford legal services, and cannot even afford to pay for an expert. Such parents often are in a position where they would benefit from legal counsel up to and through mediation (which does not cost anything beyond legal fees), but because no prevailing party fees are available for mediation, identifying counsel to work on a mediation without payment from the client can be particularly challenging.

This project would provide “scholarships” for mediation. At $1,750 per case (and Innisfree would offer no more to the attorney), this would be a sharply reduced fee from an ordinary charge for mediation. Although Innisfree could not obtain reimbursement of these fees, where Innisfree attorneys are available to conduct the mediation themselves (rather than referring out to our network of low bono attorneys), the fees would revert to Innisfree itself, and the donor’s gift would therefore do “double duty.”

Beneficiaries: Individual children.