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Helpline offers free legal advice to seniors

Dec 8, 2017

Credit freeimages.com/Marie Jean Iliescu

There's a new helpline for local seniors who need legal advice.

The Center for Elder Law and Justice started the service several months ago for residents of Monroe, Livingston, Steuben, and Allegany counties who are 60 and older.

Karen Nicolson, the chief executive director at the center, said people who call the helpline can speak directly to an attorney right away.  The center set up the service based on the inquiries they were getting.

"We were getting a lot of calls, particularly from rural communities that don't have a lot of resources and we don't have an office. A lot of those calls were just information calls for something that could be handled pretty quickly and they didn't have to go to court; they just needed an attorney to give them some guidance."

The helpline is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.  Callers can ask for free legal advice in all areas of civil law, including potential scams and landlord/tenant issues.

"We had one individual who was disabled and her landlord was not appropriately evicting her,” Nicolson said. “The landlord just showed up at her door and said, 'it's time to go.' We were able to give her some tools to handle that situation."

The helpline is free of charge. The number is 1-844-481-0973.