A new cafe is giving its caffeine-loving customers a different type of dish than the traditional muffin or breakfast pastry. Instead, those who visit Justice Cafe can seek some advice from a legal professional in family matters like divorce. This new initiative has been conceived as a way to aid middle-income families who cannot afford hiring an expensive lawyer but do not quite qualify for legal aid either. The first place to bring this idea to life is situated in the state of Georgia, just a block from the county courthouse, which quite obviously is a prime spot to begin a business geared to those who need professional legal help.
The innovative concept has caught the eye of law professionals in Canada as a way to employ young lawyers, paralegals and legal administrative assistants, allowing them to gain relevant field experience soon after completing their college programs.
Clients who visit the coffee shop can pay to receive a number of different services, including representation at 30-day hearings or drafting an answer to a complaint, according to Law.com. Founding lawyer Michael Manely told the news source that the average amount of time a cafe staff member spends with a client is about 10 hours or less.
"If they need more than 10 hours of help, then they probably need a full-service approach," Manely, a family law specialist, told the news outlet. "It's a way to serve people on Main Street. There is no reason a working man or woman should not have access to legal services."
According to The Financial Post, this creative way of boosting employment within the legal sector could significantly benefit new college graduates just starting their careers. While receiving a steady source of income, those who work in this type of office will also get to interact with a number of peers in the same professional field and expand their network tenfold.
Working in family law can also be a rewarding experience, as students will get to handle matters that involve adults and children, and their work is important as it can ultimately impact the entire family dynamic and the way these children are raised in the future.