D.C. Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton has introduced a bill that gives Department of Veterans Affairs-approved law school clinics federal funding to provide pro bono services for former military service members.
Under the Veterans Legal Support Act, introduced by Norton on Wednesday, those clinics will receive funds to help veterans in areas such as disability claims and foreclosures.
Twenty-two law schools have VA-approved legal clinics, with the University of the District of Columbia’s David A. Clarke School of Law in northwest Washington expressing an interest in starting one, Norton’s office said.
“More than 400,800 veterans are waiting for their disability claims to be processed with the VA,” Norton said in a statement. “With the assistance of lawyers and law professors, clinical programs provide free legal resources to assist veterans in processing their claims.
“My bill would merely build on what some law schools have begun to do over the last several years,” she said. “More needs to be done to sustain and increase these programs.”