McGuireWoods has a sophisticated pro bono and legal aid referral network with a long history of leadership and involvement — locally, nationally and internationally, wherever our clients do business.
All of our pro bono work is done locally, but we participate in the national organizations — such as the Pro Bono Institute (PBI) — that shape the direction of how the profession executes its corporate social responsibility. Our partners and associates serve on corporate and nonprofit boards, as well as work on behalf of organizations whose constituents would otherwise not be able to afford legal representation. As a single example, the partner-in-charge of McGuireWoods’ pro bono program serves as General Counsel for U-Turn, a Richmond, Va.-based, nonprofit mentoring program with a focus on sports and fellowship.
McGuireWoods not only participates in existing pro bono organizations, associations and opportunities, but it also identifies new ways to serve pro bono goals. Two unique opportunities include:
JusticeServer is a new technology system that, at no cost, will help thousands access millions of dollars in legal services. The initiative is made possible by a public-private partnership between Capital One, Central Virginia Legal Aid Society, McGuire Woods, the Legal Aid Justice Center and the Greater Richmond Bar Foundation. The initiative was launched in Jan. 2012, with the enthusiastic endorsement of Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli. Expansion is slated for 2013. Annually, JusticeServer will assist between 1,500 and 5,000 low-income clients. The streamlined technology is expected to improve client service, with more attorney one-on-one counseling, as well as reduce case backlog. Scott Oostdyk, McGuireWoods’ pro bono partner-in-charge and Virginia Bar Association Pro Bono Committee co-chair, has been involved since inception. In Central Virginia, we have a strong, deeply committed partnership between law firms and Legal Aid, and JusticeServer will be a tool to put millions of dollars of legal time to work for disadvantaged clients.
“Thy Will Be Done”
Our Atlanta and Chicago offices launched a project allowing McGuireWoods to give back to members of the clergy who have given so much of themselves. “Thy Will Be Done” is McGuireWoods’ initiative to offer free services required for a basic will and testament, appropriate health care directives and related financial powers to any full-time, licensed clergy member of any faith, denomination or belief in the Atlanta and Chicago metropolitan areas.