Free visiting lawyer program for Worcester County veterans on June 3

Issue June 2009 By Jennifer Rosinski

The Massachusetts Bar Association is holding its first free Visiting Lawyer Program on June 3 at the Northbridge American Legion, where Worcester County veterans will meet with attorneys to discuss their legal concerns. The new program is part of the MBA’s Serving Our Veterans in the Law initiative.

“The MBA is delighted to expand our veterans programming to further meet the needs of men and women across Massachusetts who have served our country,” said MBA President Edward W. McIntyre, a Vietnam veteran who lives and practices in the Worcester County town of Clinton. “The MBA lawyers volunteering their time and skills for this program are honored to give back to local veterans.”

All veterans who reside in Worcester County are eligible for the free program. Veterans are matched with attorneys based on their legal concerns. Each in-person meeting lasts about 15 minutes. To participate, veterans had to call the Department of Veterans in May for an appointment and go through a brief in-take process.

“I thank the Mass. Bar Association and the American Legion for holding this event,” said DVS Secretary Thomas Kelley. “Like most of us, veterans can be easily overwhelmed in matters of the law, and often don’t know where to turn. This program allows veterans to enjoy the same access to legal services as their fellow citizens.”

The event is co-hosted by the MBA, Oliver Ashton American Legion Post 343 in Northbridge and Veterans’ Services Director Ken Trajanowski, who oversees the towns of Douglas, Northbridge, Sutton and Uxbridge.

As a public service, the MBA provides the Visiting Lawyer Program at no charge with the financial support of the Massachusetts Bar Foundation, the philanthropic partner of the MBA. The MBA acknowledges its partnership with the Massachusetts Department of Veterans’ Services.

The MBA’s Serving Our Veterans in the Law initiative also includes a free Dial-A-Lawyer program and free weekly call-in service for veterans struggling with state and federal benefit appeals.