How to Find a Pro Bono Divorce Lawyer

Many attorneys each year provide legal services pro bono, or free of charge. They frequently take pro bono cases to help low-income clients, promote a good cause, or gain experience in a certain area of law. The American Bar Association and some state bar associations recommend that lawyers perform a certain number of pro bono hours per year. Not many attorneys advertise their pro bono services, however, so finding a pro bono divorce lawyer can take a little legwork.

Contact your state bar association to find pro bono attorneys.

Check the Web for online directories and clearinghouses with information on pro bono lawyers (see "Resources" below).

Ask friends, family and associates for recommended local divorce attorneys or family law lawyers. Contact these firms directly and ask if they're taking pro bono cases.

Research other area organizations that provide legal assistance. Your state or county may have a Legal Aid Society, pro bono panel group, domestic violence project, family law clinic, or child services agency to help you in your divorce case.

Check with the firm or organization to see if you must meet certain criteria to qualify for free or reduced-fee legal services.

If you can, consult with several pro bono lawyers or organizations before selecting one.

Before and after choosing a lawyer, inform yourself about divorce laws and issues in your state so that you can ask educated questions and get the best possible representation throughout the process.