Most legal aid offices provide civil legal assistance and representation to low-income individuals and families in the office's service area (usually one or more counties). You can find the legal aid office that serves your area by clicking here.
OPLC, in contrast, works on systemic poverty law issues that impact low-income Ohioans and provides support services to Ohio's six legal aid programs. OPLC does not usually represent individuals or take individual cases and does not conduct regular intake.
Is there a difference between "legal services" and "legal aid"?
When we use the terms "legal services" and "legal aid" on this website, we use them interchangeably, to describe Ohio's non-profit legal aid offices that provide free legal assistance to low-income individuals and families. Be careful, though, because some for-profit law firms call themselves "legal aid" or "legal services" to confuse the public.
Does OPLC handle cases for individuals?
No. OPLC attorneys occasionally co-counsel cases with staff at Ohio's six legal aid programs and will occasionally get involved in litigation that has a systemic impact on low-income Ohioans. OPLC does not, however, accept inquiries or consider cases brought to us by the public. If you need legal assistance, please contact your local legal aid office.
Is OPLC hiring? Can I volunteer at OPLC?
We have a small staff and hire irregularly, only as need arises and funding allows. We post all of our employment openings on the Ohio statewide legal services website, PSLawNet, and NLADA.
We welcome volunteer law students and attorneys. We hire law clerks each summer, usually posting a hiring notice in November. Check the Ohio statewide legal services website, PSLawNet, NLADA, and your law school's job listings for more information. Although OPLC cannot pay law students a salary, we are happy to support applications for public interest law fellowships and other income sources.
Attorneys who are interested in volunteering should contact Sarah Biehl for more information.
How can I contact OPLC?
You can contact OPLC by phone at (614) 221-7201 or (800) 589-5888. You can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Can I donate to OPLC?
We would be honored to accept your donation. OPLC is a Limited Liability Company (LLC) that is wholly owned by Ohio State Legal Services Association, a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation. Your donation is tax deductible. Click here to make a donation to support OPLC's work.