PLS working remotely: free, civil legal aid still available

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Pisgah Legal Services encourages those in need to reach out by phone, email

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Pisgah Legal Services, a nonprofit that provides free, civil legal aid in Western North Carolina, remains open and continues to provide help for people with low incomes during the COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak.

The staff is now working remotely, helping clients and taking new applications for assistance with critical needs that include evictions, foreclosures, domestic violence, coping with debts, unemployment and other government benefits, and health care.

“Pisgah Legal Services continues to serve existing clients and is also available to people in our mountain communities with new and urgent needs related to the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Jim Barrett PLS executive director. “In this time of uncertainty, we expect that many more people will have legal needs related to shelter, health, safety from abuse and economic security. We are committed to meeting those needs. At the same time, we are taking steps to limit community spread and ensure the health and safety of our staff and visitors. We have worked quickly to put technology and training in place that allows Pisgah Legal staff to provide services while working at home.”

Call Pisgah Legal’s main phone lines at 828-253-0406 or 800-489-6144 for help. Online applications are also being accepted at www.pisgahlegal.org/free-legal-assistance. Pisgah Legal staff and volunteer attorneys will be in touch via phone and/or email.

In addition, Pisgah Legal Services has launched a resources page at www.pisgahlegal.org to share updates.

Pisgah Legal Services’ northernmost office recently moved from Spruce Pine to Burnsville in order to expand capacity. Staff in this office are serving folks in Avery, Mitchell and Yancey counties thanks to generous support from the Samuel L. Phillips Family Foundation, the AMY Wellness Foundation and The Fund for Mitchell County, an affiliate of The Community Foundation of Western North Carolina.