‘Legal incubator’ to induce profitability

Program will teach lawyers how to make a living serving the middle and the lower middle class

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Senior Editor, The Florida Bar News

Money can be made; lawyers can find work; and clients now without legal representation can be helped using available technology. The Florida Bar hopes to put together a program to show how that can be done by next June.

Meeting under the auspices of the Board of Governors’ Technology Committee, a group of legal educators, legal aid officials, voluntary bar officers, and others met October 19 at the Bar’s Fall Meeting to discuss putting together a “legal incubator” to reach that goal.

Kimberly Sanchez, director of Community Legal Services of Mid Florida, underscored the need for services for those who don’t qualify for legal aid but can’t afford the $300 to $400 hourly rates many law firms charge.

“I have lots of clients who have lots of legal issues, who have lots of problems,” she said. “The ones I can help are very, very poor, but there are other people, tons of people in the middle, that I have to turn away.”

Sanchez said her agency gets 3,000 calls a month, which she tries to handle with 40 lawyers spread over 12 counties.

“Wouldn’t it be great if we created armies of lawyers who would do things, help that community that I can’t service, and also learn it’s important to give back and they can do well by doing good?” she said.

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