Volunteer Opportunities For Our Members
Lawyer for the Day Program
Volunteers are needed in the Salem and Lawrence Probate & Family Courts. A coordinator is present to qualify clients and assist with filling out forms, but we also need attorneys to provide more extensive guidance. Hours for Salem are Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, 9:00 a.m.— 12:00 p.m. Lawrence hours are Tuesday, 9:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. If you would like to volunteer, as little or as much as you would like, contact: Attorney Sonya Shaffaval at firstname.lastname@example.org.
*Programs made possible through a generous grant from the Massachusetts Bar Foundation.
Probate and Family Court Pro Bono Conciliation Program*
The first conciliation program of its kind in Massachusetts (and only second in the country) the ECBA Probate and Family Court Conciliation Program revolutionized pro bono court-connected alternative dispute resolution.
- An Order to Conciliation is required. The Judge may suggest conciliation or parties can request an Order at the Pretrial Conference.
- Experienced attorneys, known as neutrals or conciliators, are trained and certified per SJC Rules on Court-Connected Alternative Dispute Resolution.
- The neutral and parties work together to schedule a convenient date for the conciliation.
- The neutral reviews all documentation relevant to the case prior to conciliation.
- During COVID, the meeting is held via Zoom. Otherwise, it is held at the neutral’s private office. Either way, the neutral provides the necessary amount of time to help resolve the issues.
- The neutrals donate their valuable time to this highly successful program, however, a mandatory, non-refundable $75 per party fee is required to help support its administration. The fee is waived for low-income litigants pursuant to qualifying within the 200% bracket of the Federal Poverty Guidelines.
$75 Administrative Fee
Pro Bono Conciliation/Pretrial Programs*
The SJC has published requirements for neutrals in all Alternative Dispute Resolution Services (ADR), including Conciliation. To qualify for the Probate and District Courts, you must be a practicing attorney in Massachusetts for a minimum of three years, have received a minimum of eight hours of ADR training, and be a member in good standing. If you are interested in volunteering your services as an ECBA pro bono conciliator, kindly call the ECBA office at 978.741.7888, or email Pro Bono Coordinator Briana Sapienza at Conciliations@essexcountybar.org.