Access to Justice Facts
  • Currently in Texas, there are more than 4.4 million people living below poverty level. Approximately 5.6 million Texans qualify for legal aid.1
  • To qualify for free civil legal services, an individual must not earn more than $14,713 per year. A family of four must not earn more than $30,313 per year.2
  • Legal aid organizations help more than 100,000 Texas families each year with their civil legal needs.3
  • The average starting salary for a public interest attorney is less than $50,000.  Most new law school graduates carry an average of $89,000 or more in student loan debt.3
  • In 2014, Texas attorneys donated more than $1.1 million through the State Bar of Texas dues collection for the provision of civil legal aid for low-income Texans.4
  • Texas ranks 50th in access to legal aid lawyers.5
  • There is approximately one legal aid lawyer for every 11,000 Texans who qualify.3
  • Due to a lack of resources, only about 20 to 25 percent of the civil legal needs of low-income and poor Texans are being met.6
  • For every one person helped by legal aid, a qualifying individual is turned away.7
  • IOLTA revenue declined dramatically when the Federal Reserve lowered its benchmark interest rate to an all-time low of zero to .25 percent in 2008.   IOLTA revenues have plummeted from $20 million in 2007 to a projected $4 million in 2014 – a decline of more than 75 percent.3

Download a copy of the Access to Justice Facts [pdf]

1 U.S. Census Bureau Current Population Survey (CPS)
2 U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
3 Texas Access to Justice Foundation
4 State Bar of Texas
5 The Justice Index
6 American Bar Association
7 Legal Services Corporation

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