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Limited Scope Legal Assistance Retainer Agreement

This agreement explains the terms of the limited legal assistance that the New Haven Legal Assistance Association (“NHLAA”) has agreed to perform for you through its Federal Pro Se Legal Assistance Program (“Program”).  Typing your name at the end demonstrates your agreement to the terms herein. 

  1. Limits of assistance

The Program agrees to provide only limited scope legal assistance in connection with your matter.

This means that: 

  • You remain a self-represented (pro se) litigant and are responsible for all aspects of your case.  NHLAA is not your attorney of record in this matter.  In the event that you are or become a party to a case in the District of Connecticut or any other forum, NHLAA will not enter an appearance or otherwise act on your behalf without expressly agreeing to do so and entering into a separate signed agreement with you.  NHLAA has no obligation to enter into any such agreement. 
  • NHLAA has sole discretion to determine the specific type of services provided.  These services may include providing advice and counsel about your case, explaining court orders and procedures, reviewing and commenting on your drafts, assisting with drafting, and discussing strategy. 
  • This retainer covers this consultation only.  NHLAA can stop assisting you with this matter at any time for any reason consistent with the Connecticut Rules of Professional Conduct. 
  • NHLAA has not agreed to represent or assist you on any other matter in the future.  If NHLAA does agree to any representation on another matter, then a separate signed retainer agreement will be necessary. 
  • You may request but are not guaranteed subsequent appointments.  NHLAA will only provide assistance on subsequent appointments if it provides you with confirmation of such assistance, via email or otherwise, with such additional assistance governed by the terms of this agreement, including that the assistance is for that consultation only and that NHLAA has sole discretion to decide whether it will provide any additional future consultations.  You are responsible for and must meet all deadlines in your case, regardless of whether you are able to have an appointment with the Program.


  1. Free assistance, non-attorney providers, and competency

NHLAA does not charge for this assistance.  You may be assisted by law students under the supervision of an attorney consistent with the Rules of Professional Conduct.  NHLAA’s assistance does not guarantee success or any particular outcome but that NHLAA will provide competent assistance. 

  1. Termination of Assistance

Your participation is entirely voluntary, and you are free to stop receiving NHLAA’s limited scope assistance at any time.  NHLAA may stop providing limited assistance at its sole discretion consistent with the Connecticut Rules of Professional Conduct.  If NHLAA chooses to stop providing limited assistance, it will provide notice by email, mail, or phone. 

  1. Costs of Litigation

Filing a lawsuit or defending against a case when you are sued can involve costs.  You are responsible for all costs, including filing fees.  NHLAA will not pay for any costs associated with your case.  The Court may allow you to proceed without paying filing fees (this is called “proceeding in forma pauperis”).  Whether you are allowed to proceed in forma pauperis is entirely up to the Court. 

  1. Confidentiality

NHLAA will take all reasonable steps to maintain any information you provide as confidential. 

  1. Review and Consent

If you have questions or concerns, please leave a voicemail for the Program at (203) 850-7720, and someone will call you back to discuss this agreement. 

By typing your first and last name and today’s date below, you indicate that you: have had an opportunity to discuss this agreement with NHLAA or another Attorney of your choice; have read and understand this agreement; consent to the terms of this agreement; and understand the possible risks and benefits of proceeding with limited scope assistance.