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Outside attorneys to help with storm

The state Court of Appeals has invoked its Major Disaster Rule to allow out-of-state attorneys to provide free legal services to the residents of areas most heavily affected by Hurricane Sandy.

As a result of the storm, the court has declared that an emergency affecting the court system exists and that certain New York residents may benefit from pro bono work from outside attorneys.

Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman said that since the storm, the New York State Bar Association received several offers of assistance from out-of-state legal organizations. Rule 520.11(d) allows the out-of-state lawyers to temporarily volunteer legal services following declaration of a major disaster.

Such services are to be assigned and supervised by a New York bar association or an organization described in Judiciary Law Section 495(7) and do not include court appearances. The court will decide when the emergency is over.

Providers should notify Chief Administrative Judge A. Gail Prudenti of their participation.