Frequently Asked Questions
Legal Services of Eastern Missouri provides free legal services in non-criminal, civil cases to low-income and elderly residents in 21 counties in eastern Missouri.
Is Legal Services a government agency?
No. Legal Services is a private non-profit organization with a local Board of Directors.
Do I need to live in a certain area to get services?
We help people in the following 21 eastern Missouri counties: Adair, Clark, Franklin, Jefferson, Knox, Lewis, Lincoln, Macon, Marion, Monroe, Montgomery, Pike, Ralls, Schuyler, Scotland, Shelby, St. Charles, St. Louis City, St. Louis County, Warren, Washington.
If you live in any other county, please visit www.lsmo.org to find your local legal aid office.
Will everyone get a Legal Services attorney?
Not every legal issue will need an attorney for representation. Before a case is accepted, the case must be determined to meet certain guidelines and household income limits set by the federal Legal Services Corporation.
Other people may receive limited representation, such as written advice or a referral to another agency for help.
Will I have to pay a fee for help from Legal Services?
No, you do not have to pay any attorney fees to Legal Services. If there are costs for the courts, you will be told in advance.
What kind of information will I need to apply for services?
You will be asked about your household’s income, the property you own, your zip code, family size and composition, age, race, and citizenship or immigration status. We will ask about your legal problem and any other people involved. It is very helpful if you have any paperwork about your legal problem and indicate any deadlines that you need to meet.
Will my information be kept confidential?
Yes. All information you give us is confidential and will not be given to anyone without your permission.
What kind of cases does Legal Services handle?
Legal Services handles most kinds of civil legal case. The most common are: Housing, Domestic Violence, Special Education, Public Benefits, Consumer Issues, Senior Cases, Immigration and low-income business and non-profit representation.
What cases Legal Services does NOT handle?
Legal Services cannot handle personal injury, traffic law, bankruptcies, criminal cases or divorces unless directly related to domestic violence or abuse.
When should I seek legal advice?
When you are unsure about the law about an issue. Or, if you have received a summons, complaint or court order of any kind, or have questions about your legal rights or status, you should consult an attorney. Consulting an attorney may be necessary to protect or enforce your rights.