Access to Justice Institute

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Access to Justice Institute
901 12th Avenue, Sullivan Hall 115
Seattle, WA 98122-1090
Phone: (206) 398-4173
Fax: (206) 398-4261

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Low Bono and Solo Initiative

The Low Bono and Solo Initiative aims to assist its alumni in starting and sustaining their own solo practices or small firms, including those setting up their own practices with the intent of serving the moderate means client community.

Through the Initiative, alumni can benefit from a series of CLEs and workshops and the Low Bono Incubator Program. For those interested in taking advantage of opportunities the initiative offers, please also check out the resources and ways to connect with the community below. For more information about the Low Bono and Solo Initiative, please contact Jennifer Werdell, Access to Justice Institute Associate Director, at or 206-398-4455..

The Low Bono Incubator Program

We have a justice gap in our society: a growing number of people who need legal services cannot afford to hire an attorney but they make too much money to qualify for free legal aid. The School of Law seeks to fill that gap by encouraging its graduates to build low bono practices which serve the moderate means client community by offering high quality legal services for reduced fees. Run by Access to Justice Institute, the Low Bono Incubator Program incubates a number of alumni's new low bono practices for one year from January through December. The program's first cohort of Incubator Attorneys started in 2014. Learn more about our 2014 cohort2015 cohort, and 2016 cohort.

New this year, we are offering the David Leen Consumer Justice Incubator, which will support an alumni who will focus a significant part of his/her low bono practice on consumer law. The Consumer Incubator Attorney will be a part of the Low Bono Incubator cohort and receive all the same benefits except that the Consumer Incubatee will work out of the Northwest Consumer Law Center.

Check back soon to find out how to apply for the 2017 Low Bono Incubator Program!

Click here for the application details for the Low Bono Incubator.

Click here for the application details for the David Leen Consumer Justice Incubator.


Through a collaboration between the Access to Justice Institute, the Center for Professional Development, and the Office of Alumni Relations, the Initiative offers a series of CLEs and workshops geared to support lawyers who are in the beginning stages of launching or running a solo practice, with an emphasis on best practices for new low bono practitioners.

What Happens When I Go on Vacation? Back-Up and Succession Planning for Solo Practitioners

Wednesday, November 2, 12 noon - 1:30 p.m.
Sullivan Hall, Fred H. Dore Courtroom (Room 105)
1.5 CLE credits approved. Free for in-person attendance -  RSVP here.

You're a low bono, solo practitioner. It's approaching summertime and you want to take a well-deserved vacation with your family. Or, unfortunately, you need surgery that will take you out of work for several weeks. In either case: who will take care of your clients? For solo practitioners, coverage during an absence is a serious concern with financial, practical and ultimately ethical ramifications. According to the recent census, roughly 52 percent of all private practice attorneys are solo practitioners. Plainly, there are workable solutions to these real-life coverage problems, and this CLE will delve into some of them. Hear from Mikel Sagoian and Peter Roberts, who will lead this informative CLE.

DECEMBER 7: Strategic Planning for Sustainability and Growth - RSVP here

Other training resources offered by the larger legal community include:


The Low Bono and Solo Initiative aims to connect new attorneys aspiring to set up solo and small firm practices to others in the same community. The following are ways to connect with the solo and small firm community, including ones focused on serving moderate mean client communities:

WSBA Low Bono Section

This group brings together attorneys and professionals dedicated to providing low bono legal services to clients of moderate means for the purpose of sharing resources and supporting each other.

WSBA Moderate Means Program

Through a partnership between WSBA and the three WA law schools, law students perform intakes of moderate income clients and make referrals to attorneys willing to charge reduce fees. Click here to sign up to be a Moderate Means Program attorney and receive referrals. Click here for information on how to get involved with the program as a law student.

WSBA Solo and Small Firm Section

This section helps solo and small practice attorneys to ethically conduct a profitable, satisfying business by acting as a clearinghouse for qualified law practice management and technology information.

KCBA Solo and Small Firm Section

This section provides opportunities to discuss common problems and solutions, and receive benefits usually associated with large firms such as immediate access to fellow associates for referrals and advice through an active E-mail listserv, a Web site to provide marketing opportunities, and the use of high end equipment by sharing resources. Monthly meetings feature speakers on issues relevant to the solo or small firm including practice management, technology and marketing.

WSBA Substantive Law-based Sections, KCBA Sections and Specialty Bar Associations

The sections and associations offer members a collective voice and the opportunity to become better acquainted with other bar members who practice in similar areas of the law.


The Low Bono and Solo Initiative aims to connect our alumni who are solo or small firm practitioners to resources that will help advance their practices.

Past Low Bono and Solo Initiative Offerings

Past Low Bono and Solo Initiative Offerings

Seattle University School of Law Library

All alumni have lifetime library privileges. Graduates enjoy complete access not only to the print collection, but also to our extensive microfilm and government document collections.

Seattle University Audit Courses

Our law graduates may audit up to a total of six credit hours of law school classes free of charge. Course enrollment is on a space-available basis and subject to instructor's approval. In some cases the Washington State Bar Association grants CLE credits for such enrollment.

Lexis Nexis Discount for New Attorneys

Recent law graduates who are starting their own practice are eligible to access Advance subscriptions for $50/month for up to 18 months. Contact the Lexis representative for more information.


The Washington State Bar Association offers a number of resources including CaseMaker, a free online research library, the LOMAP's Lending Library, and the Ethics Line.