Legal Aid Service of Collier County (LASCC) is the successor agency to the former Collier County Legal Aid Society, which operated as a one-attorney legal services office in Naples for most of its seven years in operation. During a statewide restructuring of legal services in October of 2004, Legal Aid Service of Broward County assumed responsibility for providing indigent legal services in Collier County and took over operations of both the Collier County Legal Aid Society in Naples, as well as the Immokalee office of the Florida Immigrant Advocacy Center. Thus, a new entity was created: Legal Aid Service of Collier County. LASCC employs several in-house attorneys and other professional staff, offering both legal representation and pro bono coordination with volunteer attorneys. LASCC staff also regularly provide community legal education programs for the poor.
To provide high quality free civil legal advice, representation and education to the residents of Collier County, based on need, so as to encourage self-sufficiency and improve the lifestyle and living conditions of the entire community.
Where critical human needs are at stake, to provide every person in Collier County who cannot afford an attorney with the civil legal representation needed to ensure their safety, health and minimum economic security.
Fairness. Our poorest and most vulnerable citizens need real and meaningful access to civil Courts when facing the most serious possible losses or consequences involving basic human needs, regardless of their ability to pay for legal counsel.
Justice. Basic human needs continue to be jeopardized in our local civil courts for those without counsel in high stakes matters involving safety, health or minimum economic security. Equal justice demands safeguards/protection for all in these matters.
Protect Children. Every at risk child (abused, neglected or abandoned) must be provided with legal representation, as needed, to protect them and provide for their safety, health, education. All children are entitled to the provision of basic human needs, such as shelter, safe living conditions, and a home environment adequate to provide them with a chance to reach their full potential.
Protect Victims. Every victim of domestic violence, assault or other abuse (including stalking) must be provided with legal assistance adequate to secure their safety and well-being, regardless of their ability to pay.
Prevent Homelessness. All families and households who are at risk of homelessness through foreclosure or eviction are entitled to adequate legal assistance to secure their rights, regardless of their ability to pay.
Protect the Elderly, Disabled, and other Vulnerable Citizens. Low income seniors, veterans, and the disabled are among the most vulnerable members of our society. Legal assistance must be furnished when they cannot afford counsel and need help to secure benefits, housing, medical care, or other basic needs.
Safeguard Human Rights. Appropriate legal assistance must be provided, regardless of ability to pay, to individuals with immigration issues that affect their personal safety. Individuals such as human trafficking victims, victims of severe domestic violence, unaccompanied children, and political asylees facing the threat of death upon return to their home country are entitled to basic legal help as a matter of human rights, fairness, and equal justice.
Educate those with Learning Disabilities. Every child has the right to a free and appropriate education in the least restrictive academic environment possible. When schools do not provide children with learning disabilities or special needs with the services and supports to which they are entitled, these children must be provided with legal representation, regardless of their ability to pay, in order for them to reach their full potential.
Promote Healthy Home Environments for Families with Minor Children. No parent should lose custody of their children simply because they cannot afford legal counsel. The consequence of a loving parent losing custody of their children is as serious as any in our legal system.