Sometimes the best thing you can do for a client who cannot afford to retain your services is to offer them resources. If your client’s issue pertains to employment law, a potential resource is the Legal Aid Society-Employment Law Center (LAS-ELC).
The LAS-ELC offers low-income workers throughout California free and confidential information regarding their employment rights through its Workers’ Rights Clinic, which is not only offered in the Bay Area, but all over California.
Clinics are held in San Francisco, Berkeley, Fresno and Santa Ana, and are staffed by law students and paralegals who are supervised and trained by attorneys practicing employment law.
More locally, the East Bay Community Law Center hosts the clinic in Berkeley at 3130 Shattuck Avenue. Services are offered in many languages, including Spanish, Mandarin and Cantonese.
For those who are unable to attend the various clinics, the Workers’ Rights Clinic also counsels people by telephone. There are income guidelines to qualify for services.
The clinics generally do not represent clients, but they do provide basic, yet important, information on a wide variety of employment issues, ranging from denial of wages, work and safety issues and unemployment benefits, to discrimination, harassment and wrongful termination.
For more information about the clinic, please call: (415) 864-8208 or visit the LAS-ELC website at: https://las-elc.org.
Samantha Sepehr, Former Director of the Elder Law Center, is a Partner at Steele, George, Schofield, and Ramos, LLP, located in Walnut Creek.