University of Wisconsin–Madison

Apps to provide access to legal help

Many lawyers (and librarians) will tell you that information is out there, but connecting that information with the right user or client can be a challenge. These challenges come in myriad forms, ranging from technology to cost to distance. For legal rights attorneys that help the homeless or recent immigrants, access to computers and language barriers become a hurdle to overcome. However, many immigrants and poorer clients still know how to operate a smart phone (and are becoming increasingly likely to own one as opposed to a computer).

With that in mind, some attorneys are developing apps that can provide legal help or at least information about where to seek legal assistance. The American Bar Association (ABA) Tech group has compiled a list of 20 such apps that librarians, law students and lawyers may find useful: apps designed to provide easier access to legal help.

Some apps that are featured on the list include:

  • Disastr: A web app designed to help when natural disasters strike. Users can find information about obtaining food stamps, health care and figuring out insurance after a hurricane. Free

  • Shake: An IOS and Android app that allows business professionals to create contracts based on templates in the app. Both parties involved sign the created contracts and the deal is done. Free

  • PhoneView:A web app that allows users to send their text messages, whatsapp messages, videos and more to a Mac Computer. Documents are sent as PDFs so they can be read, reviewed and inventoried easily. $29.95

  • Citizenship Works: An Android and IOS app that helps walk eligible immigrants understand the naturalization process. Users can determine citizenship eligibility, find documents and study for the English and Civics test given to all immigrants applying to be American citizens. Free.

Those are only four of the apps listed. Check out the rest of the list here.

For more legal professional apps for both Android and Apple, check out the Law Library's guides to IOS and Android legal apps.

Submitted by Kristopher Turner on April 7, 2015

This article appears in the categories: Law Library

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