General Legal Questions and Legal Self-Help
Where can I get general information about the law?
The State Bar of California publishes numerous pamphlets for the public. They also publish online guides as "pdfs" which can be viewed with any internet browser or downloaded to your computer for later reading, including A Guide to Legal Literacy- an overview of the entire legal system.
Minimum Continuing Legal Education (MCLE)
Do I need any special MCLE to participate in the LRS panels?
Each of our Lawyer Referral Service (LRS) panels and our Court Assigned Counsel panels require certain amounts of experience to qualify. Because of court requirements, certain panels, such as the Special Circumstance and Delinquency Panels, also require specialized MCLE training for admittance to the panel. See the panel applications for the specific requirements for the panels in which you are interested.
Lawyer Referral Service
Why do I have to pay you (LRS)?
LRS is a service of the San Joaquin County Bar Association. As such, we screen the public so that a bankruptcy lawyer doesn’t get a referral for an adoption; likewise, we screen the attorneys so that you don’t get a foreclosure attorney for your child support issue. The $40 we charge for this covers some of the costs of keeping the office open and operating. Attorneys donate the one-half hour consultation to LRS, so that they can get the clients they want to serve. Otherwise, you would be paying the attorney twice the $40 or more to see the attorney. Everyone wins, no?