Learn about Tax Provisions of the Health Care Law (aka Affordable Care Act)

Visit the IRS Affordable Care Act website for  publications and other information about the Affordable Care Act tax provisions.

IRS Publication 5187 provides information for taxpayers who:

a. Had health insurance coverage for the entire year
b. Did not have health coverage for each month of the year
c. Purchased health insurance from the Marketplace
d. Might be eligible for an exemption from the coverage requirement
e. Had advance payments of the premium tax credit sent to their insurance provider
f. Is claiming the premium tax credit on their tax return.

Multnomah County Circuit Court 2014 Report on the Multnomah Law Library

You can read the Multnomah Law Library Report at the PSU CPS website:

This report reviews the current operations of the Multnomah Law Library and makes recommendations, based on best practices, for ways to restructure the Multnomah Law Library into a self-help center to better serve pro se litigants.”

The report’s full title: “Building the 21st Century Legal Resource Center and Law Library: A Report on the Current Status of the Multnomah County’s Law Library and Recommendations for Addressing the Needs of Current Patrons”

I will comment on this report in 2015 OLR blog posts.

U.S. 19th out of 99 in Latest Access to Justice Ranking

Too many shut out of justice, ABA president says:

Wlliam C. Hubbard, president of the American Bar Association, calls it “the justice gap.”

Deep down, all Americans believe they have a right to their day in court. They probably don’t envision that might mean a day in court with no lawyer on hand to guide them through it. But that’s the reality for an increasing number of people, perhaps one reason the World Justice Project’s Rule of Law Index ranks the United States only 19th out of 99 countries on access to justice ….” [Link to full article.]

More about A2J at the ABA Resource Center for Access to Justice Initiatives and links to State Access to Justice Commissions.

Public Law Librarian Blog: “Legal Research is Easy”

Legal Research is Easy is still one of my favorite blogs. (And I can only dream about working as a law librarian in a state with so many official court forms, practice materials, and self-help resources. Sigh.)

The blog author has fun writing the blog, is smart, funny, profane and profound, doesn’t sweat the small stuff, and is brutally honest about what self-representation is all about and what public law librarians can do – and can’t do. And he cares. When a big heart meets a tough cookie, good things can happen. (And he doesn’t even hint at the amount of dedication and work (and money management) that is required to keep his legal research skills fresh or to create and maintain a law library with the breadth and quality of legal research materials needed to provide this level of service. Easy indeed! Not!)

Try it out: Legal Research is Easy.  You will learn from it, whether you’re a librarian or a self-represented litigant – or if you think you know what public law librarians and public law libraries do, but in fact have barely a clue.

Oregon Attorney CLE: Legal Assistance to Rape Survivors Project: 12/3/14

The Victim Rights Law Center (VRLC) is offering training on Oregon’s new sexual assault protection order and civil remedies for sexual assault survivors.*

Dec. 3, 2014: 4 to 5:45 at the Washington County Law Library (Hillsboro, Oregon)

“The VRLC Portland office launched the Legal Assistance to Rape Survivors Project (LARS) to provide free civil legal services to victims of rape and sexual assault in Multnomah and Washington counties. The pro bono project provides direct legal services to survivors in the areas of privacy, safety, immigration, education, employment, housing, and public benefits. Since the launch of the project in April 2013, VRLC has provided free legal services to over 100 victims of rape and sexual assault.

Attorneys interested in volunteering for the project are welcome to attend an orientation training on Wednesday December 3, from 4–5:45pm at the Washington County Law Library (111 NE Lincoln St Ste 250-L, Hillsboro OR 97124-3036). Staff attorneys Emily Brown Sitnick and Stacy Hankin will talk about the pro bono project, as well as provide an overview of Oregon’s new SAPO and the civil legal remedies available for survivors. For more information, email Emily Brown Sitnick at esitnick@victimrights.org.

*CLE accreditation will be requested”

Oregon Legal Self-Help at your Fingertips

Our favorite and first-stop legal self-help website is Oregon Law Help.

If you need legal information and referrals on domestic violence, custody, child support, landlord-tenant, foreclosure, bankruptcy, taxes, wages and hours, employment discrimination, public benefits, immigration and workplace safety, elder law, estate planning, disability law, special education, or related topics, make Oregon Law Help one of your first stops on the Internet.

Your next stops might be 211 Info, your public library, and your public law library. And there’s more! But we’ll save those for another blog post.

The Law Decoded: Virginia (beta test)

A lot of “law & tech” endeavors often widen the gap between the legal haves and have-nots (think “digital dead end“), but this Law Decoded project (in progress) shows real promise, in addition to having a high cool factor, which never hurts. And even if it stalls, the intention, to make the law truly readable and “accessible” to all, should never be forgotten or lost in that legal-tech forest where you find a plethora of fancier A2J endeavors.

Discover the Code of Virginia: THE LAWS OF VIRGINIA, FOR NON-LAWYERS.

Virginia Decoded provides the Code of Virginia on one friendly website. Inline definitions, cross-references, bulk downloads, a modern API, and all of the niceties of modern website design. It’s like the expensive software lawyers use, but free and wonderful….” [Link to Virginia Decoded.]

Law Libraries and Access to Justice, AALL Special Committee on Access to Justice 2014 Report

LAW LIBRARIES AND ACCESS TO JUSTICE, A Report of the American Association of Law Libraries, Special Committee on Access to Justice, July 2014

AALL’s new white paper, Law Libraries and Access to Justice: A Report of the American Association of Law Libraries Special Committee on Access to Justice, is now available on AALLNET. The white paper is the work of AALL’s 2013-14 Access to Justice Special Committee, chaired by Sara Galligan, and explores how all types of law libraries – including private; state, court, and county; and academic – contribute to the ATJ movement.

As AALL Past President Steven P. Anderson noted in his introduction, “As the principal providers of legal information, law libraries are an indispensable part of the services that can be provided to those with legal needs. Law libraries make “The Law” available, and law librarians serve as guides to finding the most relevant legal information.” The white paper explains the myriad ways law libraries can contribute to the administration of an effective ATJ system and successfully work with others on the front lines of ATJ.” [Link to a PDF of the full Report.]

“Oregon Statutory Time Limitations” 2014 Edition (BarBooks)

The 2014 edition of Oregon Statutory Time Limitations is available on BarBooks.

Oregon lawyers have access through the bar association and others through the county law libraries that subscribe to BarBooks.

(In the past one could purchase a print copy of this book. We don’t know yet if this one will be available in print or digital format for purchase and use outside of BarBooks.)