Law Firm Recruits Lawyers to Provide a la Carte Divorce Services in Cafe Setting
By Debra Cassens Weiss
Nov 9, 2012, 07:00 am CDT
A Georgia law firm is opening a storefront office in Atlanta to offer a la carte divorce services to walk-in clients who will pay $75 an hour for the help.
The firm, to be called the Justice Café, will provide free coffee and sell sandwiches from a restaurant next door, according to the Fulton County Daily Report. In back will be soundproof cubicles where lawyers can meet with clients.
The location for Justice Café is a former dress shop a block from the Fulton County Superior Courthouse. Lawyer Michael Manely told the Daily Report that a walk-in, family law firm offering unbundled legal services is a first for Georgia, though there are others elsewhere. "It's a way to serve people on Main Street," he said.
Manely practices law with the Manely Firm, which targets middle-income clients with low retainers. The firm tried to offer its own clients a la carte services, but the firm’s lawyers weren’t comfortable playing limited roles in divorce cases, Manely says.
Manely is recruiting lawyers for the Justice Café, which is set to open in December. Recent law grads are welcome to apply, but they must have experience with a law school clinic or pro bono efforts. Lawyers in Manely’s firm will serve as backup advisers, billing their time to the café.