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Hurricane Harvey: How law students and lawyers can help

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Hurricane Harvey

The American Bar Association has put together a list of resources available to residents of Texas impacted by Hurricane Harvey. There are also ways law students and attorneys can lend a hand.

The ABA and the ABA Young Lawyers Division have been compiling links to #HarveyRelief efforts. Check these pages for more updates.

Survivor Information

Important insurance information
The Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) has developed a website Help after Harvey. For more information, please visit: TDI’s Help After Harvey webpage

Housing assistance
Apply to FEMA by calling 1-800-621-3362 or online at disasterassistance.gov for assistance.

Individuals with disabilities
•  Disability Rights Texas
• Partnership for Inclusive Disaster Strategies 
Hurricane Harvey Disability Hotline 1-800-626-4959 or portlight.org.

HHS Medical Shelter
Disaster Distress Helpline, a toll-free call center, that is available at 1-800-985-5990 to aid people in coping with the behavioral health effects of the storm and help people in impacted areas connect with local behavioral health professionals.

Volunteers

Texas attorneys
To volunteer, contact the Texas State Bar or the Houston Volunteer Lawyers.

Out-of-state attorneys
To volunteer,
1) Fill out this form from the State Bar of Texas or
2) Email Disaster Legal Services team member Scott Lachman.

Volunteer Training
The ABA Committee on Disaster Response and Preparedness members are discussing potential training and outreach opportunities with the The Natural Hazard Mitigation Association (NHMA) and the Texas Floodplain Managers Association & Harris County Flood Control.

Non-Legal Volunteer Opportunities
Want to help #Harvey survivors? See this list of for the public volunteer opportunities.

Legal Assistance

Disaster Legal Services
Through the Disaster Legal Services Program, the ABA Young Lawyers Division (ABA YLD) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) provide immediate temporary legal assistance to disaster survivors at no charge.

TX HOTLINE: 800.504.7030
LA HOTLINE 800.310.7029

State Bar of Texas Legal Hotline
1-800-504-7030
Helps people find answers to basic legal questions and connects them with local legal aid providers following declared disasters.

National Disaster Legal Aid
A centralized national resource for legal aid, pro bono and criminal defender attorneys across the country on legal issues related to all types of disasters.

Information for law firms affected by the hurricanes
For those firms affected there are a number of resources available, and for those looking to help, plenty of opportunities.

Make a contribution

Your donation will help the ABA mobilize the legal profession to provide legal services needed to protect their families and their possessions.

donate

Your contribution today will support ABA efforts that:

  • Train and mobilize lawyers to provide immediate temporary legal assistance to disaster survivors at no charge.In partnership with FEMA, the ABA Young Lawyers Division Disaster Legal Services Program has responded to 157 declared disasters and are in Texas now.
  • Develop a mobile app that helps flood victims gather information and documents needed to establish home ownership and complete disaster relief applications. The ABA Center for Innovation is modifying FloodProof, which recently helped Louisiana victims, for use in Texas.
  • Utilize technology to quickly assist victims with legal needs.  ABA Free Legal Answers is an innovative online resource that uses pro bono attorneys to answer legal questions online to those in need.
  • Address other barriers to crucial legal services on such issues as language and much more.

Free ABA CLE Resources

The following on-demand CLE programs are free for any attorney who wants information to help survivors:

Representing Disaster Survivors: Challenges to Survivors AND Lawyers (On-Demand CLE)
This program provides background from experienced experts on the most recurring legal issues disaster survivors face including: insurance disputes, FEMA benefits, landlord-tenant disputes, consumer fraud, and more.

Representing Disaster Survivors II: Practical Litigation Tips on How to Succeed in Court and Administrative Hearings (On-Demand CLE)
This program provides information on handling the long-term and complex legal issues that linger after the initial disaster.

ABA Law Student Division The Law Student Division empowers law student by providing them with meaningful connections to practicing professionals, job resources, relevant programming, and practical skills competitions. We represent the law student community by advocating for policies that improve legal education, champion diversity, and strengthen public service.