As the 2020 hurricane season begins, the North Carolina Pro Bono Resource Center (PBRC) is launching the Online Legal Guide to Florence Recovery and Hurricane Preparedness to help North Carolinians address ongoing legal problems from Hurricane Florence and organize their affairs ahead of future storms.
The guide, located at ncprobono.org/disaster, includes videos and other resources on topics related to recovering and rebuilding, property title, the displacement of people with disabilities, and important documents to gather before disaster strikes.
The guide will also direct those whose legal issues resulting from Hurricane Florence are still unresolved to local legal aid organizations. For those who may not meet legal aid eligibility criteria, the site will provide an online application for pro bono legal services.
The $44 billion in estimated damages and lost output from Hurricane Florence have been compounded by unmet civil legal needs created by the storm. This heavily impacts more than 639,093 residents eligible for civil legal aid in the 34 North Carolina counties designated as disaster areas. Lawyers are uniquely equipped to resolve many of these disaster-related problems and help return survivors to productivity and prevent future reliance on the government.
The online guide and the opportunity to apply for remote legal help is vital to the ongoing recovery of the counties impacted by Florence, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The information in the guide is presented by the PBRC, Disability Rights North Carolina, the Land Loss Prevention Project, Legal Aid of North Carolina, the North Carolina Commission on Volunteerism & Community Service, and the North Carolina Office of Recovery & Resiliency. This project is funded by a grant from the North Carolina Community Foundation.
The Online Legal Guide to Florence Recovery and Hurricane Preparedness is the PBRC’s latest effort to ensure that those still dealing with legal issues in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence can find the legal information and assistance they need to be better informed and prepared before the next storm.
About the North Carolina Pro Bono Resource CenterThe North Carolina Pro Bono Resource Center is a program of the North Carolina Equal Access to Justice Commission, which is a commission of the Supreme Court of North Carolina working to expand access to the civil justice system for North Carolinians of low income and modest means. The PBRC, one of only a handful of similar statewide centers in the country, has two goals: (1) to develop pro bono projects with existing stakeholders statewide; and (2) to provide support for existing pro bono activities in the state, including recruitment, training, and communication.