How do I know if I qualify for your services?
It’s simple! We charge for our services based on the number of people in the family and the totally income of the household. To see where you would be placed on our sliding scale check out this page!
What types of cases do you handle?
We have a variety of practices areas! Some include: Family Law, Tennent/Landlord Law, Pro Se, Small Claims, Gender Marker Correction, Expungements, Fair Debt Collection, Legal Name Change, and some criminal cases.
What counties do you practice in?
We practice in Monroe, Lawrence, Morgan, Owen, Greene, and Brown County. If your case is outside of Monroe County we charge a one-time fee of $50. This is to cover gas and travel expenses that our attorneys and legal interns will make during the time your case is open.
What does it mean to have a legal intern working on my case?
Our organization couldn’t run without the great help of our outstanding legal interns. All legal interns at Justice Unlocked are current law students who are under the supervision of our two staff attorneys. Our legal interns will meet with you, conduct research, and prepare court documents for your case.
How soon can we meet with an employee at Justice Unlocked?
Call us at 812- 269- 8277 and we will schedule a time that is convenient for you to come and meet with us!
What is the intake process like?
The intake process is essentially a conversation between one of our legal interns and yourself. We will send you a form to fill out, and then someone from our staff will will go over the “who, what, when, where, and why”. For the most part, they’re pretty simple, straightforward questions.. The goal is for us to get to know you and your case better and see how or if we can help! Each intake generally takes 10-15 minutes. After the intake, the intern will consult with the staff attorney to see what the next steps are!
If the attorneys decide that your case is one our organization can help with, someone will contact you and offer to do an initial consultation. This will be a longer meeting of 45 minutes to an hour where you'll meet with a member of the legal staff so they can review any documents you have, find out what your evidence is, talk to you about how we would want to move forward with the case, and generally give you the strategy they've come up with for solving your problem. At the end of that consultation, you'll be given the opportunity to decide whether you want to hire us or not!
Does it cost to have an intake and what do we need to bring?
The initial consultation with our organization costs $25 dollars, just enough to carve out an hour of the legal staff's time and "hold your spot" since occasionally our case-load becomes full and we won't be able to take any more cases. We do ask that you bring in all related paper work to your case when you come in for your intake, and anything else that you might want the legal staff to review, so that you can get the most of out of your consultation with us.
Does the monthly fee cover all my cases or pay extra?
Yes! The monthly fee that you pay each month covers all of the legal work. Essentially monthly fees cover anything and everything we do for you as a client. The only extra that you will have to pay is for things like discovery costs, background check expenses, court transcripts, or anything else that has to be paid out to the Courts or a third-party.
What happens if I can't pay after my cases have started?
At Justice Unlocked we take our charitable mission seriously, and recognize how difficult it can be for people near the bottom end of our scale. Sometimes accidents or emergencies happen, and we are committed to serving everyone as much as possible. If you're unable to keep up with the standard payment arrangements, we can make special arrangements with you for as little as $100 a month. As long as you are committed to working with us and are making regular payments of something, however little, we will not drop your case for nonpayment. We only drop cases for nonpayment when someone has refused to work with us in good faith.
Can I make the other side pay for my lawyer?
This is a difficult question to answer because so much depends on your individual case. As a general rule, each side must pay their own attorney. In Fair Debt Collection Practice cases, Protective Order cases, a limited number of statutory civil tort cases, and in SOME family law divorce/custody matters, attorney's fees can be requested but never guaranteed. It's always the discretion of the judge whether to award them or not, and the decision is based on factors like the relative difference in income between the parties, whether or not your case wins on its merits, and a number of other factors. We will always ask for attorney's fees to be awarded in cases where there's a possibility, but there are never any guarantees and generally you must be prepared to pay your own legal fees.
How much are court costs and filing fees?
This varies from county to county, sometimes quite a bit. Generally speaking, for filing a new case the court costs can range anywhere from $125 up to $300 dollars depending on the type of case, the number of independent filings, and the county.
How long does an average case take?
This is another hard one to answer, because every case is different and so much can happen. There may be times your case is continued or postponed because of the court calendar, a judge's illness, or the opposing party's motion being granted. It also depends on what kind of case, protective orders and small claims court is generally very quick, while family law cases can be quite extended. We can never promise a particular turn-around time on a case, but we can tell you based on historical data that overall our average case lasts 192 days, or about six months. Unfortunately, even when everyone is doing their best, the wheels of justice sometimes grind slowly.