News Release

Texas Access to Justice Foundation 
August 8, 2012

Texas Access to Justice Foundation Announces Grants for Veterans' Legal Services
Funds will support 11 nonprofits that provide civil legal services for veterans

Austin, Texas -- The Texas Access to Justice Foundation (TAJF) has announced grants to 11 nonprofit organizations that will help fund legal aid services for Texas veterans. With these grants, public interest and pro bono lawyers will be able to provide legal representation to low-income Texas veterans with basic civil legal problems such as denial of benefits or disability, family law matters arising from deployment, and other issues that may arise due to a veteran’s absence from home during military service.

The Texas Access to Justice Commission—through its Champions of Justice Gala—raised more than $413,000 in 2012. TAJF will use the money raised to provide the grants to the selected nonprofit organizations. Now in its third year, the Champions of Justice Gala has raised more than $1 million for veterans’ legal services since its inception.


The nonprofits receiving grant awards include:  

  • Baylor University School of Law, Waco
  • Cathedral Justice Project, Houston
  • Community Justice Foundation, San Antonio
  • Fort Bend Lawyers Care, Richmond
  • Houston Bar Foundation, Houston
  • Jefferson County Bar Foundation, Beaumont
  • Legal Aid of NorthWest Texas, Fort Worth (also includes Dallas, Panhandle)
  • Lone Star Legal Aid, Houston (includes East Texas)
  • Oficina Legal del Pueblo Unido Inc. (Texas Civil Rights Project), Austin, South Texas
  • Tarrant County Bar Foundation, Fort Worth
  • Texas Legal Services Center, Austin (statewide)

“These funds will help provide legal services for the many veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan and others who have sacrificed so much for our country,” Richard L. Tate, chair of the board of directors of the Texas Access to Justice Foundation, said. “Whether it’s through legal clinics, a staff attorney or help from a pro bono lawyer, these organizations will provide for the civil legal representation they need and deserve.”

TAJF has awarded nearly $350 million in its 28 years of existence. Legal aid organizations funded by the Texas Access to Justice Foundation help more than 100,000 low-income Texas families each year with their civil legal needs. However, due to a lack of resources, only about 20 to 25 percent of the civil legal needs of low-income and poor Texans are being met.

To qualify for legal help from a program funded by TAJF, an individual normally cannot earn more than $13,963 per year. A family of four must earn less than $28,813 per year.

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The Texas Access to Justice Foundation, created by the Supreme Court of Texas in 1984, is the largest state-based funding source for the provision of civil legal aid in Texas. The organization is committed to the vision that all Texans will have equal access to justice, regardless of their income. The Foundation administers a variety of funding sources, which are earmarked to assist nonprofit organizations in providing legal aid to approximately 100,000 Texans each year.

 

Contact: Kimberly Schmitt
512-320-0099, ext. 104
kschmitt@teajf.org

 

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