New Volunteer Wins Significant Court Ruling

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Ms. West and her family lost their subsidized housing voucher after a disabled son pleaded guilty and accepted probation for possession of a firearm. The CHA claimed the guilty plea violated their rule against “violent criminal activity.” Ms. West fought the termination and filed an appeal in Chancery court. 

Attorney Barbara Andersen happened to see Ms. West in court and wanted to help. After Judge Sophia Hall appointed CVLS under the Access to Justice Program, Barbara walked with Ms. West across the street to CVLS. There, Barbara signed on as a volunteer and took the case. CVLS’ crackerjack Access to Justice staff provided detailed training materials and worked closely with her to give her everything she needed to represent her first pro bono client. 

The result was fabulous! Barbara won the case and got the housing voucher restored. In addition, the judge issued a written ruling limiting the CHA's authority to define "violent criminal activity”. This decision will be persuasive for subsequent cases. 

Congratulations on an amazing outcome, Barbara – and welcome to CVLS!