Legal Aid Has Seven-Fold Economic Impact
February 3, 2017
For every dollar spent on civil legal aid for low-income residents, the state of Florida earned $7 in economic impact, according to a study commissioned by the Florida Bar Foundation. The study found that legal aid went largely went to helping low-income Floridians obtain federal benefits, which were spent in the state. Legal aid also saves money for governments that don’t have to foreclose on or provide emergency shelter for homeowners and tenants because of help provided. The study examined legal assistance provided in 2015 by 33 civil legal aid organizations in the state, which found that legal aid lawyers helped obtain federal benefits including $120.6 million in Social Security payments, $70.7 million in Medicaid and Medicare reimbursements, $24.2 million in child and spousal support, and $2.7 million in veterans’ benefits. “Civil legal aid helps stabilize families and individuals living at the margins of our economy,” ABA president-elect Hilarie Bass said in a statement.
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