“EQUALITY, EQUAL TREATMENT IS PERHAPS THE MOST FUNDAMENTAL ELEMENT OF JUSTICE. SO, THIS ORGANIZATION [LSC] PURSUES THE MOST FUNDAMENTAL OF AMERICAN IDEALS AND IT PURSUES EQUAL JUSTICE IN THOSE AREAS OF LIFE MOST IMPORTANT TO THE LIVES OF OUR CITIZENS.”

– United States Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia (1936-2016), on the Legal Services Corporation

President Donald Trump signed a federal stimulus package on March 27 that provides $50 million to the Legal Services Corporation to prevent, prepare for, and respond to the coronavirus pandemic. 

President Trump’s FY2021 budget proposal, released on February 10, 2020, calls for $18.2 million in funding to wind down the operations of the Legal Services Corporation (LSC)—the fourth consecutive presidential budget proposal to eliminate LSC.

Despite the President’s budget, congressional leaders have increased funding for LSC in each of the last three budgets. Congress approved a Fiscal Year 2020 (FY20) minibus spending bill in late December, that includes $440M for the Legal Services Corporation (LSC), a $25M increase over FY19 levels. This follows Congressional approval of the Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2019 in early June 2019 that set aside $15 million for LSC to fund natural disaster recovery efforts.

LSC requested $652.6 million in FY2021 to enhance funding for civil legal aid nationwide.

For more information, see the news updates below.

Latest news and developments on federal funding for the Legal Services Corporation (LSC)

National News

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Ohio News

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Letters of Support

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TALKING POINTS – 2019

OLAF & LSC Talking Points

Voices, Talking Points

Voices, Messaging One Pager

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OHIO LEGAL AID FUNDING SOURCES

Ohio contributes more than $2 for every federal dollar invested through privately-raised dollars, interest earned on lawyer trust accounts, civil filing fees and some state general revenue.

Legal aid also sustained more than 700 jobs for Ohioans throughout the state in all sectors.

Losing federal funding for LSC will mean that Ohio legal aids will lose roughly a third of their funds. In 2015, LSC provided $12.4M of the $39.9M statewide legal aid budget.

IMPACT STORIES

A Veteran’s Path to Stability

An honorably discharged veteran expressed concerns to legal aid about benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).

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A Child and a Medical-Legal Partnership

A single mother of two took her infant son and first grade son to the baby’s well exam at their local children’s hospital.

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Helping Young Parents Address their Opiate Addiction

A couple in their mid-twenties realized they risked losing custody of their two-year-old daughter if they did not address their opiate addictions.

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