Economic Impacts of Legal Aid: Civil Justice for Low-Income People Creates Ripple Effects That Benefit Every Segment of the Communities We Serve

Civil legal aid produces economic impacts that ripple outward to benefit many other segments of society. Making public officials aware of the scope and impact of these outcomes is a huge opportunity that legal aid leaders are turning to with greater frequency and success. This article presents three case studies from New York state with lessons applicable anywhere.

An Assessment of the Economic and Societal Impacts of Three Legal Services Programs Funded by The Marin Community Foundation 2009-2012

Three organizations in Marin County, California — Legal Aid of Marin (LAM), Family and Children’s Law Center (FACLC), and Canal Alliance’s Immigration Legal Services (CA-ILS) — in aggregate helped clients in more than 17,000 cases and yielded $38.3 million in economic benefits and cost savings to the entire Marin community during 2009-2012.