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Allegheny County Bar Association’s Bar Leadership Initiative Class to offer area residents three legal assistance programs during Pro Bono Day on February 28th

"Wills for Heroes" will assist first responders with preparation of wills

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania — February 23, 2009. Officers of the Allegheny County Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Division have announced that its Bar Leadership Initiative Class of 2009 will offer legal assistance and information to area residents during three free special programs that will make up its Pro Bono Day on February 28th.

The programs include “Wills For Heroes,” where volunteer attorneys will draft wills for first responders in the city of Pittsburgh; I CAN! E-file, where volunteers will help low-income residents file their state and federal income tax returns; and presentations on the public assistance programs available through the Department of Public Welfare. The three programs will be offered at several locations throughout the city. All three programs will be offered in the ACBA Conference room on the 9th floor of the City-County Building on February 28, 2009 from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. In addition, the I CAN! E-File program will also be held in the East Liberty Carnegie Library and at Focus on Renewal in McKees Rocks. The presentations on the public assistance programs will also be held in the East Liberty Carnegie Library, Focus on Renewal and Just Harvest in the South Side. Appointments are needed for the I Can! E-File Program. Call 1-888-443-4615 to schedule.

According to Mark Martini, an officer of the Allegheny County Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Division, “While our attorneys are out in the communities providing free legal service every day, we organized Pro Bono Day to try to impact as many well-deserving residents as possible on one single day. First responders such as our city police officers risk their lives protecting us, so we wanted to give something back to these brave men and women. We also wanted to help residents who may not be able to afford to get tax help be able to get their taxes filed on time so that there isn’t any delay in refunds. Finally, the Department of Public Welfare does such good work and provides much needed programs that we wanted to make sure that residents know and understand how those programs can benefit them.”

During Wills for Heroes, volunteer attorneys from the bar association in conjunction with the Pennsylvania Bar Association will use a program developed by the Wills for Heroes Foundation. Invitations have been sent to first responders from certain zones for this initial offering of this service. Several notaries will be on hand to notarize the documents once they are completed. First responders will leave with attested, notarized legal wills and power of attorney documents. This is the first program of its kind to be presented in a major metropolitan area in Pennsylvania.

For the I-CAN! E-File program, appointments are required. Residents can call 1-888-443-4615 to schedule. Volunteers will assist residents in the use of the internet accessible tax return software program. Volunteers will not offer tax advice but will be helping individuals fill out the applications. Residents will need to bring their W-2 forms with them.

The programs are sponsored by the Young Lawyers Division of the Allegheny County Bar Association, Duquesne University School of Law, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, Focus on Renewal and Just Harvest in partnership with Southwestern Pennsylvania Legal Service, Inc.

Every year, the Young Lawyers Division of the Allegheny County Bar Association accepts approximately 15 young attorneys into its Bar Leadership Initiative class. Each class must choose and complete a class project such as this year’s Pro Bono Day.

Chartered in 1870 and headquartered in downtown Pittsburgh, The Allegheny County Bar Association is a professional organization with more than 6,600 member attorneys, judges, magisterial district judges, legal administrators, and paralegals.

Can! E-File
February 28, 2009
10 a.m. until 3 p.m.
(Appointments can be made by calling 1-888-443-4615)

To be held at the following locations:

Allegheny County Law Library —Downtown
City-County Building, 9th Floor, 414 Grant Street

Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh — East Liberty
130 S. Whitfield Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15206

Focus on Renewal —McKees Rocks
Community Center, 500 Chartiers Avenue, McKees Rocks PA 15136


Public Benefits Program — Are you Eligible for benefits?
February 28, 2009
10 a.m. until 3 p.m.

To be held at the following locations:

ACBA Conference Center (Academy Room) —Downtown
City-County Building, 9th Floor, 414 Grant Street

Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh — East Liberty
130 S. Whitfield Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15206

Focus on Renewal —McKees Rocks
Community Center, 500 Chartiers Avenue, McKees Rocks PA 15136

Just Harvest — South Side
16 Terminal Way, Pittsburgh, PA 15219

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