A state bar program could make shoddy lawful assistance flourish

To the editor: As longstanding lawful aid lawyers, we were being shocked by the editorial board’s support of the California Bar Assn.’s proposed paraprofessional system.

Relatively than pick between non-public lawyers trying to shield their turf and a point out bar seeking to extend its have, The Situations must have attended to objections by nonprofit legal providers lawyers committed to growing access to justice for a lot less-resourced Californians.

Genuine sufficient, “the concentrate ought to be on the requirements of Californians who are entitled to a good shot at justice.” But not each paraprofessional software innovations that purpose. In California, “notarios” self-styled as paraprofessionals infamously prey on desperate immigrants by giving shoddy products and services, typically with dire outcomes.

Very poor lawful companies can be (much) worse than none at all. That is why safeguards matter so a great deal. Yet, the bar’s proposal omits or slights attorney supervision, restricted roles, teaching and regulation and enforcement. Licensure in this article would paper in excess of — and thereby legit and entrench — California’s existing two-tiered procedure of justice.

Leigh Ferrin, Santa Ana

Julianna Lee, Los Angeles

Ferrin is director of litigation and professional bono at the General public Legislation Centre. Lee is supervising attorney at the Lawful Help Basis of Los Angeles.