RD32 - Report to the Commonwealth and the General Assembly on Work of Virginia’s Legal Aid Programs FY2019-2020

Executive Summary:

On behalf of the Legal Services Corporation of Virginia (LSCV) and the Virginia State Bar, please find enclosed our report on the activities of Virginia’s legal aid programs for FY 2019-2020.

Virginia’s state-funded legal aid programs provided essential, high-quality legal assistance to Virginians struggling through the terrible effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic exacerbated the problems of the poor, confronted with the threat of eviction, foreclosure, unemployment, domestic violence, school closures, and healthcare restrictions. Our legal aid offices focused on the most vulnerable - children and the elderly - in their efforts to help people through this pandemic.

This report provides data on the almost 27,000 cases closed by the nine LSCV programs and statewide resource center, operating out of 35 offices covering every city and county in the Commonwealth. The work on these cases benefited over 1,000,000 Virginians.

You will also find examples of other work that does not get captured in the statistics, including community education and other outreach work done by staff in their local communities. Also included are some examples of cases handled for low-income Virginians and the economic benefits inuring to our citizens as a result of their representation by LSCV funded programs.

This year we are pleased to report that Virginia’s legal aid programs generated over $114 million in economic benefits for Virginia’s low-income population including $12 million in child support and $19 million in social security benefits.

We are very grateful for the support of the General Assembly in our efforts to make our legal system available to all Virginians regardless of their ability to pay. We look forward to continuing to work with you in pursuit of justice for all Virginians.

Yours truly,

Mark D. Braley, Esquire
Executive Director
Legal Services Corporation of Virginia

Karen A. Gould, Esquire
Executive Director
Virginia State Bar