Community Economic Development
The Community Economic Development (CED) Unit at Legal Aid Service of Collier County (LASCC) provides free legal services to small businesses and nonprofits through the Florida Community Development Legal (FCDL) Project* and the Small Business Legal Resources (SBLR) Project**.
The SBLR Project is separately funded and has different eligibility criteria than the FCDL Project. To learn more about eligibility for the SBLR Project click here to visit the project’s page.
The FCDL Project provides free legal services to small businesses owned by low to moderate-income entrepreneurs, defined as up to 140% of the Area Median Income as determined by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and nonprofits providing critical services to low-income communities that cannot afford an attorney.
To learn more about eligibility for the FCDL Project click here to visit the project’s page.
The SBLR Project provides free legal services to small businesses and nonprofits that create or retain low-income jobs, that have been impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic, and face legal or economic barriers that could be removed through the legal services offered. Project attorneys can retain the services of qualified Certified Professional Accountants (CPAs) to comprehensively address the legal issues that will enable job creation or the retention of jobs for low-income employees.
Essentially, CED attorneys act as corporate or in-house counsel for clients addressing legal needs within certain its practice areas. The CED Unit offers a wide range of free legal services to achieve these goals including, but not limited to:
- entity selection and limiting liability;
- organizational documents with the state (articles of incorporation or articles of organization);
- a company agreement (bylaws, operating agreement, or partnership agreement);
- review agreements already in use by the business to ensure they are still in compliance with best practices and current laws.
- succession planning for your organization;
- fictitious name/DBA advice and registration
- instructions on filing Annual Reports and other required state filings;
- contract drafting/review/negotiation;
- template agreements for customer services;
- commercial lease drafting/review/negotiation/re-negotiation;
- Florida trademark advice and registration;
- non-disclosure and confidentiality agreements;
- non-compete agreements;
- legal governance training;
- business acquisition representation;
- real estate closings;
- financial closings;
- dispute resolution;
- referrals to local free or low-cost business counseling services,
- and more.
Clients are assisted by appointment only. For assistance or to schedule an appointment, call 239-775-4555or email [email protected].
*Funding for the FCDL Project is provided in part by the Florida Bar Foundation through the statewide Florida Community Development Legal Project.
**Funding for the SBLR Project is provided in part by a Community Development Block Grant – CARES Act (CDBG-CV) grant by HUD facilitated through Collier County’s Community and Human Services Division. The National Objective to be achieved under this grant is Low-to Moderate Job Creation (LMJ).