Essex County Legal Aid Association
Free emergency legal advice to poor residents of Essex County, New Jersey

Essex County Legal Aid Association (ECLAA) focuses on providing immediate legal advice on civil law matters (e.g., landlord/tenant, family, consumer), preparing pro se legal paperwork and making referrals to other agencies able to further assist our clients.

ECLAA performs these emergency services on-site, in the courthouse -- the Hall of Records at 465 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard in Newark. Like a medical emergency room, we are physically located where crises related to the absence of legal support are likely to emerge for low-income residents of Newark and all other Essex County communities. We perform a form of triage similar to an emergency room.

Every one of our walk-in clients receives immediate emergency legal advice, legal paperwork preparation, and counseling from our legal staff.  ECLAA's free legal services are available to qualified low-income residents of Essex County who need such emergency help and may have even arrived in court unaware of legal support services available to them.

When appropriate, we also refer our clients to other organizations when it becomes clear to us that full legal representation is needed.  We provide referrals to Volunteer Lawyers for Justice, Essex-Newark Legal Services and other legal-services organizations whose missions complement ours – and can hopefully provide full legal representation in court, in arbitration, etc. 

Our Commitment
At ECLAA, we treat our clients with courtesy and integrity. We guarantee realistic and honest legal advice. We served 1,217 clients and their families on an emergency basis in 2014 from our office in the Hall of Records building in downtown Newark. None of our clients paid a single penny for this free on-the-spot legal advice.

If you are poor, live in Essex County, and need legal advice related to civil matters (we do not handle criminal matters), please take a look at our website's "Contact Us" page regarding income eligibility.  If you believe you are eligible for ECLAA's free help, give us a call.

We are available when the courts are open Monday-Thursday each week.  Call us at (973) 622-0063 to confirm our hours and learn what documents you should bring with you for our attorneys to review. Intake begins by 9:30 a.m. and we do our last intake at 1:00 p.m.  

No legal advice can be given over the phone. You need to come to our office to get our legal help.

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