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Associate’s Pro Bono Work for Legal Aid Catches on at Firm

Posted Feb 8, 2010 2:27 PM CDT
By Molly McDonough

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An associate's enthusiasm for his volunteer work at Legal Aid of NorthWest Texas caught on at his firm, and gave the not-for-profit agency a much-needed boost.

Cantey Hanger is better known around Fort Worth and in Texas for its representation of Fortune 500 companies and utilities, not family court cases and other legal matters troubling the indigent.

But associate Philip Vickers' pro bono work on two cases was "contagious," the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports.

Now, there are 16 Cantey Hanger attorneys who have agreed to take on, pro bono, at least two Legal Aid cases each from the not-for-profit agency.

The surge in volunteerism, has helped the Legal Aid program rebound from "the brink of disaster" when funding from lawyers' trust accounts dried up about a year ago, the paper reports.

The firm's willingness to take on family law cases is particularly useful, Ellena Simmons, the volunteer coordinator for the agency, told the paper.

"This is huge for us," Simmons said. "Because even some of the attorneys that contact us, a lot of them really don't want to do family law, and that's about 80 percent of our cases."

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