What do our clients say about us?
The following are a sampling of responses from LARC’s client satisfaction surveys:
“The woman I spoke with was very helpful. She directed me to a website, sent me information and renewed my confidence in defending myself. She also spoke on the same level as me (used every day vocabulary instead of legal vocabulary).” K.B., Everett.
“I was satisfied because they imparted information that I did not have access to. Thank you.” A.P, East Boston.
“You listened to my situation and clarified it. Then actively advised me and referred me to the proper people!”, B.M., Cambridge.
“Your organization is invaluable; you are patient, understanding, polite. I told your representative, I have a hearing problem and poor sight. She was more than patient and courteous, she was very professional. She was well informed and went out of her way to get additional information to help answer my questions very accurately.”
Who are our clients?
The following are descriptions of actual calls to the LARC hotline (names have been changed to protect client confidentiality):
“Janine” is a 48 year-old married woman with adult children. There was a long history of verbal abuse and incidents where the husband became very aggressive. There was also a history of sexual assaults. The husband, who is an alcoholic, would come home drunk at night and assault her while she was sleeping. She was afraid of her husband, but she has never called the police. She would work night shifts just to avoid him. After the most recent sexual assault, she could not take it anymore and filed for a 209A (abuse prevention order) in Dorchester District Court. “Janine” called LARC looking for legal assistance for the 10-day hearing and a divorce. The husband owns the apartment building where they resided but “Janine” never had access to the rental income or any other marital assets. The LARC advocate did an extensive intake, gave safe planning information and referred the divorce case to Community Legal Services and Counseling Center.
The 209A case was referred to a 209A Pro Bono panel maintained by LARC and Greater Boston Legal Services. An attorney from this panel represented her at the 10-day hearing where a one year extension was granted. Also, the judge ordered the husband to vacate the marital home and pay some outstanding utility bills.
“Maria” is a 45-year-old woman with a disability who called LARC, because the landlord who lived in the same building was complaining about loud music coming from her apartment, a fact that she denied. The landlord would frequently enter her apartment without permission or notice with the excuse that she wanted to do random inspections for cleanliness. Maria wanted to know what she could do to stop the harassment. LARC advised Maria of her legal rights and guided her through the legal process to enforce those rights. LARC advised Maria of her right to seek a restraining order and that the landlord may be interfering with her right to quiet enjoyment by entering her apartment without providing 24-hour notice. She was given information regarding where to file a lawsuit, how to present her case at the hearing and that she may sue the landlord for damages. Maria followed LARC’s advice and filed a lawsuit pro se. Maria successfully represented herself, won her lawsuit and was awarded $2,000 in damages.
Helen called LARC for help because she was having difficulty using her Section 8 housing certificate to rent an apartment. She and her child were at risk of homelessness. LARC advised Helen how to file for a restraining order to prevent the landlord from renting the apartment to another tenant after he had already agreed to rent it to her. Based upon LARC’s advice, Helen filed her motion pro se. Despite opposition from the landlord’s attorney, Helen was granted a temporary restraining order, followed by a court order requiring the landlord to find her an apartment. As a result, Helen and her child were able to move into an affordable apartment.