UCLA School of Law, Pepperdine University School of Law and Southwestern Law School have been awarded a one-year grant from the State Bar of California’s Commission on Access to Justice to establish a modest means incubator, a pilot program to help new attorneys launch and develop viable law practices serving modest means clients.

The law schools have partnered with local legal aid organizations and the Los Angeles County Law Library to create the Los Angeles County Incubator Consortium, through which 12-15 recent graduates – 4-5 from each law school – will receive training in establishing law practices that provide legal services to low- and modest-income populations.

The one-year program will equip participants with skills and trainings specifically geared toward effective solo practice management, including client communication, case management and business opportunity development. In addition, participants will receive training in various substantive areas of law in exchange for 200 hours of pro bono representation. Participants will also receive mentorship and guidance from lawyers and retired judges on legal strategy.

The long-term goal of the consortium — whose members also include Bet Tzedek, Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles, Community Legal Services, Neighborhood Legal Services of Los Angeles County and Public Counsel — is to develop a successful incubator program that can serve the legal needs of low and modest income populations throughout Los Angeles County.