Semi-annual Western Mass. Dial-A-Lawyer receives 465 calls

Issue November 2008

Volunteer lawyers from the Massachusetts Bar Association answered 465 calls over four hours from residents of Western Massachusetts during the semi-annual Dial-A-Lawyer Program, which was held Oct. 22 at Western New England College School of Law.

Now in its 14th year, the Western Massachusetts Dial-A-Lawyer provides free legal advice to residents of Berkshire, Franklin, Hampden and Hampshire counties. The service is provided as a public service of the MBA.

“Most of the people who call this program do not have much money. Without this program, many of them would not even call a lawyer,” said Thomas O’Connor, who has participated since 2002. “I look forward to volunteering again.”

Attorneys answered questions on a wide range of legal questions, including many involving foreclosures and bankruptcy.

Carol Klyman, who has been a volunteer for many years, said she received many calls related to the current economic crisis. One caller reported being scammed by a credit counseling service. “This is a wonderful program,” Klyman said about Dial-A-Lawyer.

The MBA’s Dial-A-Lawyer program is co-sponsored by Western New England College School of Law, The Republican, El Pueblo Latino and the Massachusetts Association of Hispanic Attorneys.