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About one-fifth of all Hispanic and Black New Jerseyans were living in poverty in 2014. (from Poverty Benchmarks 2015).


Legal Services in New Jersey embraces the vision of full access to essential civil legal aid for all economically disadvantaged people who cannot secure a lawyer on their own. This belief in the importance of legal assistance to indigent people stems from an underlying concern with fairness, and a conviction that important legal needs of individuals should be addressed.

Legal Services’ core vision and mission cannot deviate from this anchor, and the program must maintain a principal focus on meeting these basic needs. It must strive to pursue actions that have import and sweep beyond the individual parties in specific legal cases. It must prioritize legal representation that will help rebuild impoverished, deteriorating communities, or that address recurrent problems that otherwise would continue to occur in the lives of low-income people.

Legal Services must continually monitor its own effectiveness and place special emphasis on representation that actually secures fair outcomes for clients, and protects and enforces their legal rights.

New Jersey Legal Services’ core mission statement is:

"Just Justice"
Legal Services seeks to secure equal
substantive and procedural justice
for all economically disadvantaged people.

To achieve this mission:

  1. Legal Services must function as a concerted, coherent, closely coordinated legal assistance delivery system—the hub or a broader legal assistance delivery network and partnership, to ensure full access to equal justice for all economically disadvantaged people.

  2. Legal Services must develop the resources necessary to achieve this vision, and must target those resources, and use them as efficiently and effectively as possible, to achieve the greatest measure of equal justice.

  3. Legal Services must incorporate the views of its consumers and key partners, as appropriate to their experience, stake, and role, in making major decisions about how to design and implement its system of services.



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» New Jersey Legal Services System at a Glance

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