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Free Legal Aid in Tacoma

Last updated: December 16, 2013

Do you have a legal issue in Pierce County, but no money to hire an attorney? Findlaw can help. We’ve done the research and found several free or low-cost legal service options residents in Tacoma. The main provider is through the volunteer legal assistance program run by the bar association called Tacoma-Pierce County Volunteer Legal Services Program.

There may be income limits that apply for you to qualify for free/low-cost help. Contact the specific agency to learn more. Below is a list of several organizations available to help you.

General Law

  • American Civil Liberties Union of Washington

    901 Fifth Avenue
    Suite 630

    WA 98164

    Tel: (206) 624-2180

    Areas of Law: Discrimination, Election and Voting, Freedom Speech, Freedom of Religion, Immigration Rights, LGBT Rights, Privacy, Police Practices, Jail and Prison Conditions, and other issues of fair treatment by government.

    Good to Know: The ACLU does not usually assist in the following types of cases: criminal defense or post-conviction appeals, divorce or child custody disputes, property disputes, tax problems, workers compensation issue, consumer complaints, landlord-tenant disputes, building code issues and complaints about lawyers or judges. Click here to submit an online request for legal services.

  • CLEAR Legal Referral Service

    Coordinated Legal Education, Advice, and Referral (CLEAR)
    Tel: (888) 201-1014

    Areas of Law: Civil

    Good to Know: CLEAR is Washington’s centralized intake, advice and referral service for low-income people seeking free legal assistance with civil legal problems.

    You can begin the screening process by calling our toll-free phone number or through CLEAR Online.

  • Lakewood Pro Bono Clinic at MSM

    Multicultural Self-Sufficiency Movement (MSM)
    3820 Steilacoom Boulevard Southwest

    WA 98402

    Tel: (253) 584-5615

    Areas of Law: Civil

    Good to Know: This free legal service is by appointment only. Both Korean and Russian interpreters are available at the MSM clinic

  • Moderate Means Program - State Bar of Washington

    1325 Fourth Avenue
    Suite 600

    WA 98101

    Tel: (855) 741-6930

    Areas of Law: Consumer, Family, and Landlord/Tenant

    Good to Know: This is a legal referral service run by the Washington State Bar for middle-income individuals. They assist people whose income is too high to qualify for free legal services, but too low to pay a lawyer’s standard rate. The Program connects people whose income is within 200–400% of the Federal Poverty Level to lawyers who offer legal help at reduced fees (usually $50 to $150 an hour).

  • Tacoma-Pierce County Volunteer Legal Services Program

    21 Tacoma Avenue South
    Suite 303

    WA 98402

    Tel: (253) 572-5134

    Areas of Law: Civil, Landlord-Tenant, Family Law, Foreclosure

    Good to Know: This is a program run by the state bar. They provide direct legal services free of charge to those who qualify based on income guidelines. They also have rotating legal clinics staffed by volunteer attorneys. You don’t need to be a resident of Pierce County, but your case must be here.

Criminal Record Expungement

  • Evergreen State College, Tacoma Law Club

    The Evergreen State College
    1210 6th Avenue

    WA 98405

    Tel: (253) 572-5134

    Areas of Law: Criminal Record Expungement

    Good to Know: The Law Club has partnered with Volunteer Legal Services to bring this program to the community. Attorneys can help with sealing, vacating, and deletion of criminal records. Lawyers are provided thru Volunteer Legal Services by way of the Pierce County Bar Association. Call to learn dates and times.

Domestic Violence and Family Law

  • Crystal Judson Family Justice Center

    718 Court East
    WA 98402

    Tel: (253) 798-4310

    Areas of Law: Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault, Stalking, Restraining Orders

    Good to Know: This organization helps victims of domestic violence with restraining orders, family law issues, and other civil legal matters related to your situation. No appointment is necessary.

  • YMCA Legal Line

    YMCA Pierce County
    405 Broadway

    WA 98402

    Tel: (253) 365-6352

    Areas of Law: Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault, Stalking

    Good to Know: This organization helps victims of domestic violence with restraining orders, family law issues, and other civil legal matters related to your situation.


  • Piece County AIDS Foundation

    3520 South Pine Street
    WA 98409

    Tel: (253) 383-2565

    Areas of Law: Wills

    Good to Know: This organization provides free estate planning & other civil legal needs to HIV+ clients.


  • Northwest Immigrants Rights Project

    402 Tacoma Ave South
    Suite 300

    WA 98402

    Tel: (253) 383-0519

    Areas of Law: Immigration, Domestic Violence, Human Trafficking

    Good to Know: This organization provides direct legal services to low-income immigrants and their families. Call to learn more.

Landlord Tenant

  • Landlord-Tenant Services

    747 Market Street
    Room 250

    WA 98402

    Tel: (253) 591-5163

    Areas of Law: Landlord/Tenant Disputes

    Good to Know: This organization helps people to understand landlord / tenant laws and can help individuals to negotiate with their landlord if he/she is not following correct legal procedures.

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