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Map of Regions
Florida has a comprehensive and stable system of legal service programs in place. The Florida Bar Foundation funds 44 programs through IOTA revenues. Within these programs are 12 federally-funded programs, 12 bar sponsored programs, the statewide support center (Florida Legal Services), five law school clinics and 16 special focus, special needs programs.
The 12 federally-funded and 10 bar sponsored programs provide general legal services to the poor population of their service areas, although, a number of the bar sponsored programs provide primarily family law services. All but one of the federally-funded programs serve multi-county areas of two to 14 counties. Each of the bar sponsored programs covers a service area of one county. The 16 special programs serve special need groups, such as the institutionalized elderly, immigrants, developmentally disabled, mentally ill, migrant farmworkers, state prisoners and children.
Every county in Florida is within the service area of at least one legal services program. Approximately 50% of the 67 counties have at least one legal services programs office. Programs serving counties where there is not an office utilize circuit riding (visiting counties without offices on a scheduled basis), pro bono panels and toll free telephone service to help residents of those counties gain access to legal services. The distribution of office locations throughout the state reflects a strong effort to locate offices in counties with larger poor populations and in counties centrally located to serve multiple counties with relatively small poor populations.
The client eligibility standard for legal assistance providers in Florida is 125 % of the federal poverty level. However, individual provider programs often have special grants that enable them to serve certain populations, such as the elderly, victims of domestic violence and others, with incomes which exceed the general eligibility standard. Therefore it is important to contact the provider program directly to determine possible eligibility for assistance.
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Directory of Programs