Pro Bono Program
About the Pro Bono Program
St. Mary’s University School of Law offers a number of pro bono opportunities for students wishing to volunteer their time and gain exposure to various practice areas.
Students participating in these programs perform important work, providing much needed help to members of their community.
In addition, students who meet certain criteria may be recognized during their graduation ceremony.
For more information on pro bono activities, and for information regarding careers in public interest law, please contact Pro Bono Supervisor and Staff Attorney, Gregory Zlotnick.
Note: The St. Mary’s University School of Law Pro Bono Program does not provide legal representation to the general public. The Clinical Program, which accepts a limited number of cases in specific practice areas for qualified individuals, can be contacted by calling 210-431-2596. Please be advised that Clinical Program staff conducts an income and asset screening prior to providing information, advice, referral or representation.
The Family Law event provides legal assistance for uncontested family law matters. Law student volunteers will shadow lawyers during the client interview process. Judges are also present at this event for finalizing divorce proceedings. This event is offered once a quarter.
This event focuses on drafting wills and ancillary documents. Client attendees have been pre-qualified based on income levels. Law student volunteers will either assist with the drafting of the documents or shadow the lawyer as they prepare them. The law student volunteers will also serve as the witness to the will’s execution. This event is offered once a quarter.
The Veterans Event was developed to address the many legal needs of our veterans. Lawyers are available from all areas of practice to answer general questions, prepare documents and provide other legal information services to pre-screened veteran clients. The event is held at the Audie L. Murphy Memorial VA Hospital, and law student volunteers shadow the lawyers as they advise veterans on the legal matters presented. This event is offered approximately once a month.
The Ask-A-Lawyer event is a joint effort between Catholic Charities and St. Mary’s University School of Law. Law student volunteers interview individuals about various legal issues and then consult with available lawyers about the legal issues that arise. Event participants are offered legal information only, and if necessary, referred to legal aid or to other attorneys. This event is offered regularly and will be advertised as event dates become available.
People’s Law School
People’s Law School is an annual event, co-sponsored by St. Mary’s University School of Law and the San Antonio Bar Foundation, which invites the San Antonio community to the law school to attend seminars led by lawyers from various practice areas. Law student volunteers assist with welcoming participants and operating the event. Additionally, law student volunteers will have the opportunity to attend the seminars and to aid the lawyers with their presentations. This event occurs once a year in the spring semester.
Sign up for the Pro Bono Program/Public Service on TWEN for more information on upcoming events and to register to volunteer! If you have any questions, contact Pro Bono Supervisor and Staff Attorney, Gregory Zlotnick.
St. Mary’s Sponsored Opportunities
All volunteer hours from the St. Mary’s University School of Law sponsored projects list qualify for the State Bar of Texas Law Student Pro Bono College Certificate.
St. Mary’s needs volunteers to assist with the ID Recovery Project at Haven for Hope, San Antonio’s largest homeless service provider. Obtaining identification is particularly important to people experiencing homelessness, as some type of photo identification is required for employment, housing and more. Volunteers work with student attorneys and supervising attorneys at their office located in the Haven for Hope Courtyard on Friday afternoons. After training, volunteers conduct interviews with clients to assist them in acquiring the necessary documents to obtain valid identification. This project operates year-round. For more information about volunteering, please contact Pro Bono Supervisor and Staff Attorney, Gregory Zlotnick.
Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA)
St. Mary’s needs volunteers to assist with tax preparation. Through this program, the University leverages its strengths and talents to make a substantial, positive impact on the surrounding community.
St. Mary’s VITA site is jointly supervised by the School of Law and the Greehey School of Business. Our VITA site has been recognized by the American Bar Association for its “faithful and professional execution of public service by providing tax preparation assistance to low income and underserved communities.”
The St. Mary’s VITA Site operates from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays from late January through mid-April, and training begins in early January.
If you are interested in volunteering or for more information, please visit the VITA page.