Knowing your rights as a citizen is an incredibly important aspect of living anywhere. There are some rights that are guaranteed no matter where you go. However, each state and city have their own set of rules and regulations in addition to these overarching laws. This may be especially true for laws when it comes to rental properties and the rights and responsibilities of landlords and tenants. Finding neighborhood legal services could answer questions.

Knowing what neighborhood legal services are available when a person moves into a new area can be incredibly helpful. Doing an online search to find lawyers in the area can be beneficial. However, if you don’t have a lot of money, that could be problematic. Thankfully, there are services you can access that are free or available at a reduced cost. They include the following.


D.C. Bar Pro Bono Center’s Advice and Referral Clinic

If you need advice from a lawyer about a civil legal matter, you have the opportunity to meet with an attorney to discuss your issue. This service is free. There’s no income limit for who can attend. The attorney you speak to in private will not be the one who represents you if your case is taken to court. However, they can answer your questions and give you advice on the best way to proceed.Blueground offers fully-furnished, equipped and serviced apartments in some of the world's most sought after cities.Speaking to an attorney is a good way for you to know exactly what your rights are and if you have a case. Even if the lawyers at the Advice and Referral Clinic won’t be the ones who represent you, they may still be able to refer you to another agency that can help.

neighbourhood legal services a man and a woman having a discussion

This clinic is open to the public every second Saturday of the month for a couple of hours. It can be found at two different locations. They ask that you bring all your documentation with you. That way, they have all the information necessary to give you the advice you need. Some of the matters they may be able to assist with include the following:

  • Tax lax
  • Bankruptcy and/or debt collection
  • Employment law
  • Housing law
  • Personal and property damage
  • Probate
  • And more

The clinic will not be able to help you if you have any criminal issues. These include traffic citations or record expungement requests. It is also only available to individuals. Businesses, nonprofits, tenant associations, or other groups will have to get their legal advice elsewhere.


Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia

If you’re looking for information on public benefits, such as food stamps, health insurance, unemployment, or worker’s comp, this is where you’ll need to go for assistance. In addition, they can help with landlord and tenant issues, various types of debt, foreclosure issues, and domestic violence.

The Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia helps individuals and families who fall below a certain income level. It is the oldest and largest general civil legal organization in the area. It has been in operation since 1932, helping people with their neighborhood legal services.


Catholic Charities

If you need information on consumer debt, landlord and tenant issues or housing, public benefits, wills and probate, employment, or family law, this is the organization that may be able to assist you. They won’t take on cases that have to do with criminal issues.

Knowing where to go for neighborhood legal services can be challenging if you’re new to an area. Knowing what your rights and responsibilities are, even if you’re visiting the country but need to open a bank account, can be confusing. Being able to talk to someone who is versed in the law without it costing a lot of money can be incredibly beneficial.

If you’re looking for an apartment in a new city and would like to know what your rights and responsibilities are as a tenant, you might consider working with a company like Blueground. Blueground leases furnished apartments to tenants from a variety of backgrounds, including foreign nationals. In addition to offering flexible month-to-month leases, the premium housing provider allows you to reserve your home before arrival.  

neighbourhood legal services a furnished blueground living room with a grey couch and big windows

Moving to a new city can be an exciting and fun prospect. It can also bring some challenges. While there are laws that can be applied broadly no matter where you live, each city or state might have their own rules and regulations in addition to the general laws.

If a civil matter arises, especially if it has to do with landlord and tenant issues, knowing who to turn to for advice and help can give you peace of mind. It can also ensure that everyone is abiding by the laws. It will also allow you to determine who is responsible for what issues and the best way to take care of them.

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