Legal Self Help Centers Add Extra Conveniences
PINELLAS COUNTY - The Self Help Centers created by the Clerk's Office, the Sixth Judicial Circuit and the Community Law Program have new services, Ken Burke, Clerk of the Circuit Court, announced.
"When we opened we were not set up to take credit card payments," said Burke. "Payment is required to schedule an attorney appointment. Our customers had to come into the centers twice: once to pay for and schedule an appointment and again for the appointment."
The Centers, which charge pro se or self-represented civil court litigants $1 per minute* for attorney sessions, now accept credit card payments over the phone enabling customers to call and schedule an appointment with the attorney, according to Burke.
Working with the Hispanic Outreach Center, the Clerk's Office has made the Centers more accessible to the Spanish speaking citizens. Fridays from 8:30 a.m. until 12:30 p.m., a Spanish interpreter will be available at the Clearwater Center, 324 S. Ft. Harrison Ave., and the Self Help Centers' brochure has been translated to Spanish.
*Attorney appointments may be scheduled for a minimum of 15 minutes to a maximum of one hour in 15-minute increments. There are no income eligibility requirements. Refunds will not be issued for missed appointments. Attorneys may assist with civil-action legal forms (i.e. family law, landlord-tenant, small claims), and can not represent customers in court.
More information is available at http://www.pinellasclerk.org or 727-464-5150 (Clearwater) or 727-582-7941 (St. Petersburg).
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