Legal Aid Line FAQs

Who is eligible for services provided by LAWO and ABLE?

Generally, individuals or groups of individuals living in the 32 counties of western Ohio and who meet income requirements based on federal poverty guidelines and other special factors are eligible for the civil legal aid services provided by ABLE and LAWO. Our Migrant Farmworker Programs serve all 88 Ohio counties.

How can I find out if I need a lawyer?

Contact Legal Aid Line by Phone

New inquiries from Lucas County can call (419) 724-0460.

Those living outside of Lucas County (residents of Allen, Ashland, Auglaize, Champaign, Clark, Crawford, Darke, Defiance, Erie, Fulton, Greene, Hancock, Hardin, Henry, Huron, Logan, Mercer, Miami, Montgomery, Ottawa, Paulding, Preble, Putnam, Richland, Sandusky, Seneca, Shelby, Van Wert, Williams, Wood, and Wyandot Counties) should call toll free at (888) 534-1432.

Eligible individuals will receive free legal assistance or a referral.

Contact Legal Aid Line on the Internet

Apply for help online (o en español, solicite ayuda) by completing and submitting our intake form.

If you do not live in our service area, do not have a case which must be resolved in one of these counties, or are not a migrant farmworker or detained immigrant in Ohio, then Legal Aid Line probably cannot assist you.

To find legal services programs which serve Ohio counties other than the ones listed above, you call toll-free (866) LAW-OHIO or click here.

What’s the difference between Civil and Criminal legal services?

Civil legal service organizations (Legal Aid) represent people in cases related to private rights – such as fair housing, domestic relations and social security benefits. Criminal legal service organizations (public defenders) represent people in cases that relate to offenses against public law, such as theft or fraud.

What is the difference between a Legal Aid program and the public defender program?

Legal Aid programs provide services in civil, or private rights, cases while a public defender program provides defense counsel in criminal matters.

What if a Legal Aid program will not help me?

If you do not qualify for help from a Legal Aid program, or legal aid cannot represent you, they may still be able to refer you to a competent private attorney.

How do I find out more about Legal Aid programs?

Continue to browse this website, or you can contact or stop by one of the Legal Aid offices in your area.