News from the Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network

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Webinar: Legal Basics - Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

Fri, 03/24/2017 - 13:06

Justice in Aging will be holding a webinar entitled Legal Basics: Supplemental Security Income (SSI) on April 11, 2017 from 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm Eastern. This webinar is designed for legal services and other advocates who are just getting started in the field and others who want to learn more about the essentials of the program. 

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OFFICE CLOSINGS: PLAN CLOSED - MARCH 14, 2017

Tue, 03/14/2017 - 07:44

The Harrisburg Office of Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network, Inc. is closed today, Tuesday, March 14, 2017 due to the extreme weather conditions in the Harrisburg area. 

State office buildings in the Capital Complex, Harrisburg area, Philadelphia office buildings, and the Reading and Scranton State Office Buildings are all closed as well. 

The Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network program offices are reporting the following closing information:

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SPECIAL ALERT: Fast Moving US House Bill to Radically Restructure Medicaid Would Be Bad for Pennsylvania

Tue, 03/07/2017 - 11:26

Last night House Republican leaders released a bill that details their plan to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, scrapping the mandate that nearly all Americans have health insurance and replacing it with a system of tax credits aimed at enticing Americans to purchase health care on the open market. 

The bill would end Medicaid as we know it by imposing a “per-capita” cap, giving states substantially less federal funding than they would get under Medicaid today, with the cuts growing larger each year.

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Health Law PA News - February 2017

Wed, 03/01/2017 - 14:34

The Pennsylvania Health Law Project has released the February 2017 edition of Health Law PA News. Health Law PA News is a free newsletter containing the latest news relating to Health Law in Pennsylvania. You can subscribe to receive the PHLP eNews, which links to the Health Law PA News on the PHLP website at www.phlp.org

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Pennsylvania Legislative Budget and Finance Committee Issues Evaluation Report on the Use of the Access To Justice Act Funds

Mon, 02/27/2017 - 14:51

HARRISBURG, PA – Today, the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee, a bicameral, bipartisan Committee of the Pennsylvania General Assembly, released a report on the use of the Access to Justice Act filing fee funds that support the provision of civil legal aid low-income Pennsylvanians and survivors of domestic violence. The report found that the Pennsylvania Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Accounts (IOLTA) Board, where the funds are distributed, and the Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network (PLAN), where the services are delivered, do an excellent job fulfilling their fiduciary responsibility to properly administer the funds and that the actual provision of services with these funds is of high quality.

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Chief Justice Saylor Thanks Bar for Support of Legal Aid and Encourages Additional Commitment Through Pro Bono

Mon, 02/27/2017 - 11:15

Chief Justice of Pennsylvania Thomas G. Saylor has directed a letter to all members of the bar of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania thanking them for their financial support of legal aid, and joined with Pennsylvania Bar Association President Sara Austin in requesting that attorneys consider making an additional personal commitment through the provision of pro bono representation of the poor and through financial support of Pennsylvania's legal aid programs.

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Webinar: HUD’s Final Rule Implementing VAWA 2013

Fri, 02/24/2017 - 14:22

The National Housing Law Project (NHLP) is hosting a free webinar on March 1, 2017 from 2:00 pm-3:30 pm Eastern on HUD's Final Rule Implementing VAWA 2013.

The webinar will provide specifics on provisions outlined in HUD’s final rule, effective December 16, 2016, that implements critical protections for survivors of domestic and sexual violence accessing federally subsidizing housing.

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New Report Show Impact of Repeal of Affordable Care Act in Pennsylvania

Thu, 02/09/2017 - 13:52

More than a million Pennsylvania residents would lose their health insurance and more than 2.5 million seniors could lose protection from large prescription costs if the Affordable Care Act is repealed, according to data contained in a major report released by the Pennsylvania Health Funders Collaborative (PHFC).

In addition, virtually every Pennsylvanian with private health insurance – nearly 10 million people – would lose valuable protections including coverage for pre-existing conditions, limits on age-related premium increases, elimination of life-time limits and a ban on insurance companies using medical information to refuse coverage or set higher premiums, and the right for children to remain on their parents’ health insurance until age 26.

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LSC Loan Repayment Program Accepting Applications Beginning February 1

Tue, 01/31/2017 - 13:23

The 2017 Application Loan Cycle for the Legal Services Corporation Herbert S. Garten Loan Repayment Assistance Program will open on Wednesday, February 01, 2017 at 9:00 AM Eastern Standard Time.

The deadline for application submissions during this cycle is Tuesday, February 28, 2017 at 5:00 PM Eastern Standard Time.

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Health Law PA News - January 2017

Tue, 01/31/2017 - 13:01

The Pennsylvania Health Law Project has released the January 2017 edition of Health Law PA News. Health Law PA News is a free newsletter containing the latest news relating to Health Law in Pennsylvania. You can subscribe to receive the PHLP eNews, which links to the Health Law PA News on the PHLP website at www.phlp.org

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Are you Eligible for the Earned Income Credit? It's Easy to Find Out.

Fri, 01/27/2017 - 10:42

If you worked last year and your income is less than $53,505, check out your eligibility for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). EITC can mean up to a $6,269 refund when you file a return and have qualifying children. Workers with no qualifying children could be eligible for a smaller credit, up to 506 dollars. In Pennsylvania last year EITC added an average of $2,271 to refunds.

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Elder Justice Resource Center of Philadelphia Courts to Work with Temple University Beasley School of Law to Provide Free Legal Assistance to Seniors

Wed, 01/25/2017 - 13:07

The Elder Justice Resource Center of the First Judicial District (Philadelphia Courts) will begin working with Temple University Beasley School of Law on February 1, 2017 to offer free legal assistance to unrepresented seniors, age 60 and above, via the school's Elderly Law In-House Clinical Program.

Located in Room 278, Philadlphia City Hall, the Elder Justice Resource Center will be open Monday through Friday, from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm. In-house clinical services will be offered every Wednesday.

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FTC Charges Defendants with Selling Fake Payday Loan Debt Portfolios

Mon, 01/09/2017 - 14:17

The Federal Trade Commission has charged a Kansas man and his companies with selling portfolios of fake payday loan debts that debt collectors used to get people to pay on debts they did not owe. At the FTC’s request, a federal court halted the operation pending litigation.

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Danger of the Opt-Out: Strategies for Preserving Section 8 Project-Based Housing in Philadelphia

Wed, 01/04/2017 - 14:00

A report detailing affordable housing at risk of being lost due to owner opt-out was released by the Justice Lab clinic at the Stephen and Sandra Sheller Center for Social Justice at Temple University Beasley School of Law and Community Legal Services (CLS).

In response to the report, CLS is calling on the Department of Housing and Urban Development, City of Philadelphia, and the Philadelphia Housing Authority to take action to protect affordable housing for low-income tenants in the City.

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Health Law PA News - November-December 2016

Wed, 12/21/2016 - 10:28

The Pennsylvania Health Law Project has released the November-December 2016 edition of Health Law PA News. Health Law PA News is a free newsletter containing the latest news relating to Health Law in Pennsylvania. You can subscribe to receive the PHLP eNews, which links to the Health Law PA News on the PHLP website.

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HUD Awards Nearly $2 Billion for Local Homeless Programs

Wed, 12/21/2016 - 10:03

As part of the Obama Administration’s effort to prevent and end homelessness, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has awarded a record $1.95 billion in grants to nearly 7,600 homeless assistance programs across throughout the nation, including Puerto Rico, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. 

HUD’s Continuum of Care grants provide critically needed support to local programs on the front lines of serving individuals and families experiencing homelessness. Programs in Pennsylvania are scheduled to receive in excess of $100 milllion in this round of grants. View a complete list of all the state and local homeless projects awarded funding.

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Lawsuit Filed Challenging Allegheny County Jail’s Practice of Placing Pregnant Women in Solitary Confinement

Tue, 12/20/2016 - 09:06

A lawsuit has been filed in federal court in Pittsburgh challenging the way officials treat pregnant women held at the Allegheny County Jail. The lawsuit alleges that jail officials routinely place pregnant women in solitary confinement for extended periods of time without justification, knowing full well that this practice can harm the health of the women and their pregnancies.

The suit was filed on behalf of five preganant inmates at the facility by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Pennsylvania, the Abolitionist Law Center (ALC), the Pennsylvania Institutional Law Project (PILP), and Reed Smith LLP. Attorneys for the women are asking that the complaint be certified as a class-action.

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Bankruptcy Basics for Low-Income Clients 2016 Offered by Practising Law Institute

Tue, 12/13/2016 - 12:58

The Practising Law Institute is offering a free on-demand course entitled Bankruptcy Basics for Low-Income Clients 2016, as part of its commitment to support pro bono representation of indigent individuals.

This basic program was developed for brand new practitioners and those who are either not familiar with the practice or have not practiced bankruptcy law since the passage of the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005 (BAPCPA). The program will focus on Chapter 7 bankruptcy, from the day a new client walks into your office, to the day you receive notice that they have successfully received a discharge and their case is closed.

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