Melissa Baker Linville

  • Hosted by Legal Aid Society of Columbus
  • Sponsored by Ohio Access to Justice Foundation
  • Service location Columbus, Ohio
  • Law school Ohio State University Michael E. Moritz College of Law
  • Issue area Consumer Rights
  • Fellowship class year 2013
  • Program Design Your Own Fellowship

The Project

Melissa provided direct representation to low-income clients filing for bankruptcy and expanded capacity by growing a robust bankruptcy pro bono program.

Recession and slow economic growth over the past several years have sparked an increased need among low-income individuals and families for legal assistance with financial issues. Bankruptcy can provide much-needed relief to people who spiral into debt because of unemployment, medical catastrophes, or other unexpected circumstances. Requests for legal aid continue to outpace available resources in the aftermath of significant staff reductions at The Legal Aid Society of Columbus (LASC) and other legal services providers. Growing a network of pro bono and low bono attorneys will enable more low-income people to save their homes, stop wage garnishments, and achieve financial stability.

Fellowship Highlights

During her Fellowship, Melissa has:

  • Provided legal assistance and counsel to people seeking advice on bankruptcy, including filing Chapter 7 bankruptcies and representing clients in adversary proceedings
  • Coordinated a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy pro bono referral program
  • Recruited and trained more than 150 volunteers – attorneys, paralegals, law students and others to participate in the organization’s programming
  • Coordinated bi-monthly bankruptcy by-pass clinics to help long-term, uncollectable debtors draft cease and desist letters to their creditors

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Host: Advocates for Basic Legal Equality, Inc.

Sponsor: Ohio Access to Justice Foundation

Erica Pun

Host: Legal Aid Society of San Mateo County

Sponsor: Pfizer Inc.

Michael Deemer

Host: Ohio State Legal Services Association

Sponsor: Ohio Access to Justice Foundation

Maria-Daniel Asturias

Host: Center for Responsible Lending

Sponsor: Friends and Family of Philip M. Stern