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Civil Appeals Clinic

Get information about the remote civil appeals clinic run by the Volunteer Lawyers Project

If you have questions about how to appeal a judgment or decision from a trial court, the Civil Appeals Clinic may be able to help. At the Clinic, free attorneys can explain the process for appealing a judgment or decision and answer questions about it. These attorneys also can help you decide if you should appeal a decision. In some cases, your case may be referred for further assistance and representation on the appeal.  

About the Clinic

The Civil Appeals Clinic, which currently operates remotely, is run by the Volunteer Lawyers Project and staffed by volunteer attorneys. It is limited to low-income persons who qualify for services. You will be screened for income, assets, and case type, among other things, before a volunteer attorney can meet with you. For more information about the screening process, please contact the Eastern Region Legal Intake (ERLI) Helpline at 617-603-1700.

Clinic hours

The Clinic is staffed remotely on Wednesdays from 12:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. To sign up for the clinic, you may call 617-603-1700 or complete an online intake [here]. 

Please note that in person services at the Clinic have been suspended indefinitely.

What to have available when meeting remotely with Clinic staff

Please have available the following information:

  1. the judgment or decision;
  2. any briefs or motions about that judgment/decision; 
  3. the complaint and answer filed in your case;
  4. any papers you have filed to appeal your case; and
  5. any other court papers about the issue you would like to appeal.

If you do not have these documents, you should contact the Clerk’s Office of the Trial Court involved in your case to learn how to get them. 

Please be aware that there are deadlines for filing an appeal, which vary depending on the type of case. You can learn more about these deadlines and find more information about appeals on these websites:

  1. http://www.mass.gov/courts/selfhelp/civil-appeals
  2. http://www.mass.gov/courts/court-info/appealscourt/appeals-court-help-center/self-help-guides-list.html.

In addition, you can call the Eastern Region Legal Intake (ERLI) Helpline at 617-603-1700 to learn more about additional legal resources that may be available to you.  

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