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YLD rounding up volunteers for hurricane assistance; Florida Bar website offers resources and tips for hurricane prep

News in Photos

Santo DiGangiThe Young Lawyers Division has sent an email to all of its members seeking volunteers to assist Floridians who may be impacted by Hurricane Dorian.

“We are in the process of re-opening the Bar’s Disaster Relief Hotline,” YLD President Santo DiGangi said. “After a hurricane hits, many people need simple advice about how to get their life back in order.”

Florida Bar President John Stewart also reminds members that The Florida Bar has an entire web page of resources and tips dedicated to hurricane prep, both for lawyers and the public.

John Stewart“I hope wherever you are tonight, you’re preparing for Hurricane Dorian, and I hope we can all stay safe as this storm approaches and eventually makes landfall in Florida in the next few days,” Stewart said.

The Florida Bar YLD, in conjunction with the ABA Young Lawyers Section and FEMA, sets up the Disaster Relief Hotline. All Florida Bar members eligible to practice may volunteer to provide basic civil legal services for people who cannot otherwise afford legal representation in non-fee generating cases. Volunteers should complete the sign up form and review the Disaster Assistance Manual for Legal Services Advocates. The volunteers assist by returning calls placed to the YLD’s 1-800 hotline or at FEMA centers.

To be a volunteer, you simply have to indicate a willingness to serve and have a basic understanding of common problems experienced by disaster victims. The Florida Good Samaritan Act and the Federal Volunteer Protection Act provide protection for the volunteers who offer assistance. The legal assistance provided will be to people who cannot otherwise afford representation and counts as pro bono hours for reporting purposes. The types of legal questions most frequently asked as related to hurricane disasters involve landlord/tenant and other housing problems, consumer protection matters, and home repair contracts.

More information can be found on The Florida Bar YLD’s website.

With Hurricane Dorian approaching, The Florida Bar will also be updating its 2019 Hurricane Information page, which shares essential information and guidance for those who may be affected by the storm.

The Florida Supreme Court web page also posts updates on all court closures and tolling orders.

For updates and announcements from Gov. Ron DeSantis visit www.flgov.com.