Supreme Court Pro Bono Recognition Program
Attorneys for Justice
In an effort to increase the number of attorneys and law offices providing pro bono services to those who cannot afford legal costs, the Tennessee Supreme Court has an extensive recognition program. The Court honors all attorneys providing at least 50 hours of service annually, with a goal of increasing statewide pro bono work to 50 percent participation.
In the program, attorneys meeting the Court’s minimum goal of 50 pro bono hours annually will be named “Attorneys for Justice” by the Tennessee Supreme Court.The program is entirely voluntary and based on self-reporting. You will be considered for recognition should you voluntarily report the pro bono work you did the previous calendar year when you renew your legal license with the Board of Professional Responsibility (BPR). To be considered for the program, all service must have been provided under the provisions of Rule 6.1 of the Rules of Professional Responsibility, which includes delivery of a substantial portion of legal services without fee or expectation of fee and delivery of legal services at no fee or at a substantially reduced fee to recognized groups and individuals.
Attorneys who have already renewed their legal license with the BPR but did not report their pro bono work may submit an application for recognition directly to the AOC. Attorneys who wish to apply for recognition before their renewal deadline may also submit the application. The attorney application is available here. The application deadline for attorneys to be recognized is September 30, 2016.
Law offices are eligible to be recognized for pro bono work done by their attorneys by submitting an application for recognition directly to the AOC. The law office application is available here. The application deadline for law offices to be recognized is September 30, 2016.
2015 Attorneys for Justice Pro Bono Honor Roll
Attorneys and law offices were recognized for their pro bono service in 2015 are listed on the 2015 Attorneys for Justice Pro Bono Honor Roll available here.
Law Students for Justice
The Court will recognize law students for their demonstrated commitment to providing legal services to those in need. The program seeks to acknowledge any student at a Tennessee law school who performs 50 or more hours of pro bono work during their law school career as a “Law Student for Justice.” The program is similar to the attorney recognition program.
To be considered for the program, all service must have been provided under the provisions of Rule 6.1 of the Rules of Professional Responsibility, which includes delivery of a substantial portion of legal services without fee or expectation of fee and delivery of legal services at no fee or at a substantially reduced fee to recognized groups and individuals. Clinic work and other experiential learning courses where students receive course credit will not count towards pro bono work for recognition purposes.
Each school is responsible for verifying students’ participation in the pro bono activities and reporting it to the Administrative Office of the Courts for consideration. For May 2016 graduates, the deadline to apply for recognition is June 30, 2016. For December 2016 graduates, the deadline is December 31, 2016. Law School Administrators should send the full name, e-mail address, and mailing address for eligible graduates to ATJInfo@tncourts.gov.
2016 Law Students for Justice Pro Bono Honor Roll
Law students are being recognized as 2016 Law Students for Justice are listed on the 2016 Law Students for Justice Pro Bono Honor Roll available here.
Supreme Court Pro Bono Recognition Events
The Court will host events throughout the state to honor attorney, law office, and law student recipients. The 2016 schedule for events will be posted once determined.
The program is the result of a recommendation by the Supreme Court’s Access to Justice Commission, which is tasked with making such recommendations to the Supreme Court of projects and programs necessary for enhancing access to justice. For additional information or if you have any questions, please contact Anne-Louise Wirthlin, Access to Justice Coordinator, or Patricia Mills, Pro Bono Coordinator at the Administrative Office of the Courts, at ATJInfo@tncourts.gov or 615-741-2687.