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2016 Top-Rated Nonprofit

CARPLS

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Crime & Law, Legal Services

Mission: Using innovation and technology, CARPLS' experienced attorneys level the legal playing field, promote a more effective justice system and give clients powerful tools to solve problems and overcome life's challenges.

Results: We serve more than 50,000 people annually. Since our launch in 1993, we have provided more than 800,000 free legal consultations to low- and moderate-income individuals in Cook County. We manage 25% of all legal aid cases in Cook County at a cost of only $65 per consultation.

Target demographics: Low- and moderate-income individuals and families find access to justice

Direct beneficiaries per year: 50,000+

Geographic areas served: Cook County, Illinois

Programs: Our free legal aid hotline for Cook County residents, our statewide IL-AFLAN hotline for veterans and military in Illinois, and four court-based advice desks.

Community Stories

27 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have been involved with CARPLS for about 10 years as an Associate Board member. CARPLS is truly an amazing organization dedicated to providing access to legal services to those who cannot otherwise afford it. CARPLS does this by leveraging technology and engaging people who really care about the services that CARPLS provides. Being part of the CARPLS family has been a rewarding experience, both professionally and personally, and I look forward to staying involved in the years to come. - Shaun H.

Comments ( 1 )

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jswartz 08/03/2018

:) Thank you, Shaun. We love having you as part of the CARPLS family.

2

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

CARPLS is an organization that is focused on providing access to justice for everyone by ensuring an attorney is always at the center of the service. This organization's work makes an important difference to people who otherwise would have no other legal access and would end up at the mercy of a complicated legal system. CARPLS' mission is to provide everyday justice to everyday people. Tanya P.

2 Ashlee5

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have worked for CARPLS for 10+ years and love the work we do helping people for free. It is great to empower people to find solutions to their legal problems.

Previous Stories
3

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

As a supervising attorney, I am proud to be on the staff of CARPLS. We are an amazing organization that provides immediate help to clients up to 350% of the federal poverty level in any area of law.

2

Board Member

Rating: 5

I have worked with CARPLS for 10+ years: first, partnering with CARPLS on a project while at a Chicago law firm; second, as a volunteer Hotline attorney; and third, as a member of its Associate Board. Foremost, CARPLS provides excellent legal services to its clients. Clients get one-on-one assistance from CARPLS attorneys and paralegals, including advice, document preparation, follow up, and referrals for other services. CARPLS is committed to serving the people of Cook County and continually works to expand the number of clients it serves each year. Lastly, the legal services provided by CARPLS benefit everyone who appears in Cook County courtrooms that hear cases with pro se litigants because CARPLS clients can state their case more quickly and accurately, allowing for a more efficient court call.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5


I have been associated with CARPLS for over 20 years and have witnessed the impressive growth and expansion of its services. It is not only one of the premier pro bono legal services in country, it also afford each of us the opportunity to participate in and see the benefits of the hard work and dedication of the CARPLS staff and employees. it is a blessing to be able to have been part of this organization for so long and the invaluable assistance that they provide those in need is undeniable.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I served on the board and as treasurer of this organization in its early years, have been a consistent donor, and have been a volunteer lawyer on its hotline since the beginning of 2018. CARPLS serves a vast need that other organizations are not able to address given their financial constraints, and does so in an efficient and effective manner. It has developed resources that allow staff and volunteers to equip clients to find the legal services organization most likely to help them or, where that is not possible (as is often the case), to understand their situation and make the choices available to them in an informed way. It provides focused and useful help to people who are caught up in our mysterious legal system and desperately need the help.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

I've been involved with several non-profits, both as a volunteer and as a board member. I can truly say that CARPLS separates itself from the pack with a highly efficient group of folks who care deeply about those who desperately need legal help but can't afford it. There is very little waste, a strong network of passionate volunteers and countless clients whose lives have been positively affected by CARPLS. Very few organizations are as adept at casting a wide net and helping such a high volume of people on a daily basis.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

I have paid them twice now and have not received any call back from them. Is this a scam?

Comments ( 1 )

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jswartz 08/01/2018

CARPLS has been one of Cook County’s largest legal aid programs for 25 years, helping 100,000s of clients. We take all comments seriously, if a client has any concerns about CARPLS or our services, please contact us at info@carpls.org.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As a volunteer attorney, I have never felt more rewarded than when I successfully empower one of our clients with critical legal knowledge about their specific situation. CARPLS serves an absolutely critical need in the Chicago community by providing legal guidance or referrals to those most at need. The fact that CARPLS is able to efficiently achieve its mission with technology and a cadre of dedicated personnel reflect the nonprofits commitment to the community and pioneering spirit to do good. For me personally, helping the underserved navigate the complexities of the law represents the legal profession's critical and traditional role in society. CARPLS continues that legal tradition in the 21st century.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

CARPLS is a tremendous resource to the Chicago community. It offers people who cannot afford legal services the much needed access to those while at the same time it offers attorneys the opportunity to explore alternative areas of law. That's a veritable win win!

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

CARPLS is unique in its model and effectiveness. I am so proud to have volunteered with this agency. Only wish there were more hours in the day to volunteer!

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I first started working for CARPLS back in 2011 when I was a summer intern. Through my internship, I was able to witness the true passion all of the attorneys had for helping those in need have access to the justice system. Once I graduated from law school in 2016, I started volunteering for CARPLS as a hotline attorney twice a month. Again, the passion of the volunteers and staff is unparalleled and the organization is truly helping lower income individuals receive the legal advice they need and deserve.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am a volunteer with CARPLS and am so proud to be part of the organization. I am frequently touched by the gratitude of the clients we serve, and know that it is a wonderful gateway into the legal system for those who may otherwise feel excluded. It's coordination with the other legal aids in the city of Chicago is imperative.

3

Board Member

Rating: 5

I have been a board member of CARPLS on an off since the 1990s. It is a remarkable and innovative organization that leverages technological advances to provide legal services to the most vulnerable and needy in our community. During a time in which budget pressures have caused state and local governments to cut back legal aid funding, CARPLS has managed to expand the services it provides by doing things more effectively and efficiently. At CARPLS, 100 cents on the dollar go directly to providing services to those below the poverty line. CARPLS provides a valuable service to the needy in the Chicagoland community, and therefore to all of us.

2

Board Member

Rating: 5

I have been a CARPLS board member for several years. The organization's best aspects: 1) they offer access to legal services in 12 or 13 legal areas useful to the working poor of Cook County; 2) they are very cost-effective from the standpoint of expenses per client service; 3) the staff is excellent - continuing to innovate with technology, client service offerings, access channels, donor value propositions.

2

Board Member

Rating: 5

CARPLS fills a very important need in Cook County. People often have legal questions -- like what rights they have in a landlord/tenant dispute, or how family law issues work -- but don't know where to turn for help. CARPLS attorneys speak directly with clients to provide them with legal advice. It's a great model, and a great organization!

3 David375

Board Member

Rating: 5

Wonderful Organization - dedicated staff that does great work!

2

Donor

Rating: 5

Without CARPLS, the legal system in Chicago would grind to a halt. CARPLS is an extremely efficient and effective organization that helps thousands of people in need get necessary and valuable legal aid. As a donor, I am honored to support this excellent organization.

2

Board Member

Rating: 5

CARPLS is great at providing access to justice and streamlining the legal services delivery system process.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

CARPLS helps everyday people, who want legal advice but can't afford a lawyer, solve legal problems with advice from a lawyer. No other organization provides meaningful access to justice as effectively as CARPLS.