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Poor People's Justice: Denying Access in Civil Cases - Video

by University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

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Description

Poor People's Justice: Denying Access in Civil Cases The UNC Center on Poverty, Work and Opportunity and the UNC Pro Bono Program presented a panel discussion on the difficulties of the poor in accessing the civil legal system, and what can be done to remedy this problem. It is widely estimated that 80% of the legal needs of the poor people in the U.S. go unmet. Unlike criminal cases, where poor defendants are appointed an attorney, there is no constitutional right to counsel in civil cases. The choices for someone facing the legal system without representation are bleak and few: represent oneself without legal expertise, or forgo legal claims entirely, sometimes with dire consequences. Speaking on this important topic were Janet Ward Black, former President, North Carolina Bar Association and North Carolina Trial Lawyers Association; and George Hausen, Executive Director, Legal Aid of North Carolina. Gene Nichol moderated the discussion.