Legal Assistance

This page contains a list of Lawyer Referral Services, Free Legal Resources, and Legal Aid Agencies available to Bristol County Residents. This information is provided as a public service and does not constitute legal advice, which can only be given by an attorney. This page references information as of the time of publication and is subject to change without notice.

Court Service Centers

The Massachusetts Trial Court offers several free walk-in Court Service Centers across the state.  Court Service Centers offer help to litigants navigating the court system and are available to all self-represented court users.

Court Service Centers offerings include:

  • One-on-one help with filling out court forms;

  • Information about court rules, procedures, and practices;

  • Computers with access to online resources;

  • Access to interpreter services;

  • Contact information for community resources, legal assistance programs, and social service agencies.

     

There are six Court Service Centers located across the state.  Each Court Service Center is located within a courthouse complex and is open whenever the court is open. The 6 locations are (click address for map):

Staff at the Court Service Centers can give legal information, but not legal advice. Legal information includes answering questions about how the court works and the different options available to you.  However, staff cannot help you decide what you should do and they can’t predict what will happen in your case. Court Service Center staff may give information to all parties to a case and should not be thought of as your attorney.

Limited Assistance Representation (LAR)

Limited Assistance Representation (LAR) is an attorney who represents or assists with only part of a legal matter.

Attorneys can practice LAR by coaching the litigant outside of court on laws and procedure without ever appearing in court.  These attorneys may draft documents for the litigant and they can appear in court with the litigant for specific parts of a case.  Litigants pay for LAR attorneys, but because of the limited representation the cost is generally much less than traditional representation.  LAR attorneys must be “qualified” and they have special training.  You can find a list of LAR attorneys in Bristol County here:          Bristol LAR Attorneys List

Lawyer of the Day

The Lawyer of the Day program seeks to provide free legal assistance to indigent individuals. These volunteer attorneys can assist with completing forms and explaining basic court procedures.  A schedule of dates and locations can be found here:         Lawyer of the Day Calendar

PLEASE NOTE:  Lawyer of the Day office hours are generally 9AM until noon on the dates indicated on the calendar.  However dates & times are subject to change without notice. Please call ahead to confirm lawyer availability:         (508) 977-6040

Other Legal Resources

The following offer referrals to private attorneys or free resources available to the general public:

 

South Coast Counties Legal Services, Inc.

22 Bedford Street, 1st Floor

Fall River, MA 02720

(508) 676-6265
(800) 287-3777

website: sccls.org

Bristol County Bar Association

Lawyer Referral Service

448 County Street
New Bedford, MA 02740

(508) 990-1303
(800) 647-5151

website: bristolcountybar.org
e-mail: info@bristolcountybar.org

MA Bar Association

Lawyer Referral Service

(617) 654-0400 (800) 392-6164

website: massbar.org

Justice Bridge Legal Center

UMass School of Law

257-259 Union Street

New Bedford, MA 02740

(508) 449-9296

website: justice-bridge.org

 

National Lawyers Guild

14 Beacon Street, Suite 407

Boston, MA 02108
(617) 227-7008

website: nlgmass.org