Don’t Forget Legal Aid on Giving Tuesday

Did you know that Virginia Poverty Law Center was founded in 1978 as the Virginia State Legal Aid Society Support Center (VSLASSC)? The VSLASSC, or the “Big Pickle” as we were affectionally known, was created to help train and educate Virginia legal aid organizations on civil poverty law issues. For 44 years, VPLC has been […]

Open enrollment for the health insurance marketplace begins. Let’s ENROLL VIRGINIA Nov.1 – Jan. 15!

Enroll Virginia’s statewide team of navigators is hard at work preparing for Open Enrollment, scheduling free one-on-one appointments and outreach events to guide consumers through the health insurance enrollment process. Open Enrollment at HealthCare.gov runs from November 1, 2022 through January 15, 2022. This is the only time of year that anyone can enroll in […]

A Time to Recharge: 2022 Annual Statewide Legal Conference

More than 500 attorneys and staff members from Virginia’s legal aid community joined with pro bono attorneys and our community partners to attend the 42nd Annual Statewide Conference, hosted by Virginia Poverty Law Center. The hybrid conference offered both in-person attendance in Virginia Beach, as well as online-only sessions.  It’s four very busy days, jam-packed with […]

VPLC’s Bar Stars Join Fight for Justice

Congratulations to VPLC’s newest attorneys, Anna Daniszewski and Flannery O’Rourke, who passed the Virginia State Bar exam. Daniszewski received her Juris Doctor degree from New York University School of Law and works in VPLC’s Center for Family Advocacy as a Family Defense Fellow. O’Rourke graduated from the University of Richmond School of Law and is […]

Calls to VPLC’s Eviction Legal Help Line Increase 500%

Now that important tenant protections have expired, Virginia courtroom dockets are stacked with eviction filings — as rents continue to skyrocket and the federally funded rent relief program has ended. VPLC’s Eviction Legal Helpline is stretching to meet the need, as a typical week might bring more than 250 calls from desperate residents about to […]

Lonnie “Chip” D. Nunley, III Selected for Pro Bono Award

It’s been said that the best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others. If this Mahatma Gandhi quote is true, you can bet Chip Nunley certainly knows himself inside and out. The long-serving litigator and trusted member of VPLC’s Advisory Council will receive the 2022 Lewis F. Powell, Jr. […]

Meet Anna Daniszewski, Family Defense Fellow

New to VPLC’s Center for Family Advocacy, Anna Daniszewski will help ensure that parents involved in Virginia’s child welfare system have zealous lawyers fighting for their families.  Daniszewski’s fellowship includes legislative and policy advocacy, providing legal services to parents, and developing trainings, practice protocols, and accountability standards. “Too often, children and parents are needlessly separated […]

Meet Our New VPLC Team Members

Flannery O’Rourke has joined VPLC as a Law & Policy Analyst. She will support legislative efforts within our Center for Healthy Communities in the areas of unemployment benefits and social security. She recently received her Juris Doctor degree from University of Richmond. Miranda Huffer is the newest member of the Development team. After a successful […]

Virginia’s Eviction Crisis

Since July 1, Virginia has seen nearly 16,000 new eviction cases, marking the end of the state’s rent relief program and the expiration of temporary legal protections provided to tenants during COVID-19. In that time there have been more than 1,800 calls to VPLC’s Eviction Legal Helpline. That’s far more than the staff and volunteer […]

Grant Aims to Improve Access to Justice

VPLC is the recipient of a $32,500 grant from the Virginia Law Foundation. Funds will be used to host the 2022 Annual Statewide Legal Aid Conference. The education and training event is known as one of the best civil poverty-law conferences in the U.S. VLF grants awarded to two dozen organizations increase access to legal […]

Final Settlement in Class Action Suit Pays Hundreds of Millions from Illegal Internet Lending Schemes

Gibbs v. Elevate, Gibbs v. Stinson, Brice v. Stinson The US District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia this week approved a settlement in the last of nine class action lawsuits against entities that sought to evade state and federal law by making extremely high-interest internet loans in Virginia and other states. The August […]

Hundreds of Richmond Renters Get a Crash Course on Legal Rights

A Community Education and Engagement Specialist with VPLC’s Housing Advocacy team recently learned of emerging problems at the Pointe at River City apartment complex in Eastern Henrico County. After hearing about some of the issues facing tenants, the advocacy team spent a Friday afternoon combing through records at Henrico General District court. They discovered that more […]

Federal and State Lawsuits Fight ‘Slumlord’ Operating in Virginia

The Virginia Poverty Law Center, Consumer Litigation Associates and Kelly Guzzo have filed federal and state lawsuits on behalf of tenants of the Seaview Apartments in Newport News. The lawsuits name Seaview Apartments LLC and Ben Weinstein and his New Jersey-based company Blue Rise Group as defendants. Fifty-eight tenants are prosecuting their claims under the […]

Virginia Poverty Law Center Expands Outreach

New Team Members Help Break Down Barriers to Justice  RICHMOND, VA – The Virginia Poverty Law Center (VPLC) welcomes two new Outreach Coordinators, a new LA VIDA Program Paralegal, a new Communications Director and, a new Office and Finance Manager to the team. Fresh off the heels of landmark wins against the Virginia Employment Commission […]

PRESS RELEASE: Class action settlement provides $489 million in relief to victims of illegal internet payday lenders

After three years of extensive litigation, the settlement will provide relief to approximately 555,000 consumers who were subject to illegal practices by internet payday lenders. FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 12, 2022   Richmond, VA – The federal court in Richmond today gave preliminary approval of a class action settlement that will provide $489 million of relief to […]

PRESS RELEASE: Statement from the Virginia Poverty Law Center and Legal Aid Justice Center on Gubernatorial Vetoes of HB573 and SB297 (Medical Debt Reform)

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 14, 2022 Virginia Poverty Law Center and Legal Aid Justice Center state that Governor Youngkin’s vetoes of Del. Clark’s HB573 and Sen. Deeds’ SB297 have derailed critical, popular, and thoughtfully crafted bipartisan consumer debt reforms for thousands upon thousands of Virginians. Richmond, VA – Outstanding bills for medical treatment are one […]

2022 Session Update: Week Two

This was a busy week at the General Assembly for VPLC advocates. We often must try and follow bills being heard in two or even three committees that meet at the same time! Please encourage your legislators to do the right thing and publicly praise them when they do. Below, an update on some of our issues […]

2022 Session Update: New Leadership, Same Mission

The 2022 General Assembly is off and running, with 1,938 House and Senate bills filed — and more expected to come. Our advocates are dealing with a lot of change this year: a new Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, members in the House of Delegates, and committee chairs. But among the change, one thing remains […]

PRESS RELEASE: New anti-poverty laws take effect in Virginia today

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 1, 2021 The suite of new laws will protect tenants, help families with food assistance, expand health coverage, protect consumers, and more. Richmond, VA – Effective today, several new laws in the Commonwealth will benefit hundreds of thousands of low-income Virginians. The new laws include better protections for tenants, expansion of […]

New Housing Laws Take Effect Today

Big changes in housing law are taking effect in Virginia, with many temporary eviction protections expiring soon and new housing laws that passed during the 2021 legislative session going into effect today. Read below to learn more about the major updates. EVICTION PROTECTIONS   Federal CDC Eviction Moratorium extended to July 31, 2021: The CDC Eviction […]

PRESS RELEASE: Jill Hanken, VPLC Health Attorney to Retire, VPLC Announces Scholarship Fund in Her Honor

The Jill A. Hanken Scholarship Fund will honor Hanken’s accomplishments and build upon her legacy by training health law advocates in Virginia’s legal aid community. RICHMOND, VA – After a long and storied career of public service, advocacy, and leadership in healthcare for low-income Virginians, Jill Hanken, Health Attorney and Director of the Center for […]

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