How We Help

Giving Hope Through Services

LSNF provides representation to low-income and vulnerable individuals in civil matters only. Eligibility for assistance may be based on income and assets of all members of the household and the legal problem.

LSNF serves the legal needs of children, elderly, victims of abuse, veterans, and people with disabilities. LSNF's priority areas include supporting families; preserving the home; maintaining economic stability; safety, stability and health; and serving populations with special vulnerabilities. These translate to cases involving Family Law, Housing, Public Benefits, Consumers, Employment, Education, and Health Care issues. Each case is reviewed on its own legal merits for case acceptance.

Service Area

LSNF provides civil legal assistance throughout 16 counties in the Florida Panhandle.

LSNF service area map by counties
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Consumer

LSNF’s works with clients to ensure that issues such as debt collection and lending practices are done in a lawful manner. Our volunteer and staff lawyers may provide counsel, advice or full representation in the following case types: bankruptcy, debt collection issues, predatory lending issues, contract issues, and unfair or deceptive sales practices. LSNF partners with the North Florida Center for Equal Justice (NFCFEJ), the Florida Attorney General’s Office, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), and other state and federal agencies to ensure that our client’s rights are protected. We refer cases to NFCFEJ and the Florida Attorney General’s Office when there is the possibility of a large number of people becoming victims of a consumer fraud.

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Domestic & Sexual Violence

LSNF provides service to adult and child victims of abuse, sexual assault, stalking and human trafficking. Our primary focus is securing orders of protection and safety planning. Other services may include divorces, child custody, and housing. LSNF may assist victims with other legal matters related to victimization. We work closely with state and federal prosecutors, law enforcement agencies and victim advocates. It is our mission to help families rebuild their lives and become self-sustaining, contributing citizens in our communities.

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Elder Law

Elder law encompasses many different areas of law that affect individuals 60 years of age and older.

LSNF volunteer and staff lawyers may provide counsel, advice or full representation to senior citizens in many areas of the law. In limited circumstances, LSNF may provide assistance with wills, and other simple estate planning, and some probate matters. Simple estate planning may include beneficiary deeds, powers of attorney, and health care directives. We may also provide assistance with guardianships for those who need protection. Each case is reviewed on its own legal merits for case acceptance.

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Family

LSNF’s services help families rebuild their lives and become self-sustaining, contributing citizens in our communities. LSNF handles some family law matters where the situation may threaten the security or the viability of a family. LSNF may handle the following types of cases: paternity, adoption, name change, and some guardianships. LSNF also handles dissolution of marriage cases where abuse is present. Each case is reviewed on its own legal merits for case acceptance.

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Housing

LSNF works to keep the family safe and secure by preserving inhabitable and affordable housing. LSNF also focuses on removing barriers to families ability to obtain housing. It is one of our highest priorities to protect our clients from living in homelessness. Our volunteer and staff lawyers may provide counsel, advice or full representation to clients in the following types of cases: lease agreement dispute, landlord lockouts, poor living conditions and public housing issues. LSNF may also assist with homeownership and real property issues. Each case is reviewed on its own legal merits for case acceptance.

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Public Benefits

Some of LSNF’s clients receive public benefits. These benefits are often the primary source of household income and the loss or reduction of these benefits is devastating. Our volunteer and staff lawyers may provide counsel, advice or full representation to clients in the following types of cases: Social Security and SSI benefits, veterans benefits, Medicaid, Medicare, food stamps, unemployment compensation, TANF/Temporary Assistance, and Agency for Healthcare Administration advocacy.

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Tax Law

Through LSNF’s Low Income Tax Clinic (LITC)  volunteer and staff lawyers may provide counsel, advice or full representation to clients in the following types of cases: collection issues, including offers-in-compromise, installment agreements and currently-not-collectible status; examination, including audit reconsideration; innocent and injured spouse claims; appeals; liens; levies; Tax Court litigation; identity theft; cancellation of debt; and, employment classification. LSNF’s LITC also provides English as a second language services offering outreach and education to taxpayers for whom English is a second language or for those who have limited English proficiency.

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Disaster

After a disaster, like a hurricane or other natural disaster, you may need help 1.) Securing FEMA and other benefits, which you have the right to appeal if you disagree with the decision; 2.) Making life, medical and property insurance claims. You should consent with an attorney if your claim is denied or too low; 3.) Dealing with home repair contractors; 4.) Replacing wills and other important legal documents destroyed in the hurricane; 5.) Helping with consumer protection matters, remedies and procedures; 6.) Counseling on mortgage-foreclosure problems or landlord/tenant issues; and 7.) Securing title to your home or property to prove ownership for benefits or insurance purposes.

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Legal Clinics

LSNF offers weekly, monthly, and one-time clinics across our the 16 counties we serve.

You can follow us on social media or check out the clinics calendar below to stay up-to-date on our upcoming events and clinics near you.

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Outreach

LSNF provides educational programs and workshops for its social service partners who are often the low-income population’s only link to mainstream society. These trainings help identify situations where legal counsel is necessary, and they know where to turn when legal help is needed. Outreach clinics are designed to help low income citizens handle a variety of legal problems. These clinics are held throughout the year and include those by invitation from social service providers throughout the community. Social service providers throughout the Florida panhandle are encouraged to contact the LSNF in their area to request our participation at community events or workshop/training forums.