What to Bring

When you come to one of Volunteer Lawyers Birmingham’s Legal Help Desks, you will be able to meet with an attorney. It is important to bring any legal and financial documents related to your case.

Proof of Income

Each time you visit a Help Desk, you must bring at least one of the following as proof of income:

  • Pay stub
  • Disability, unemployment, social security, or other benefits approval letter
  • Copy of employer-provided tax document (W-2 or 1099)

What to Bring to Specific Help Desks

Domestic Relations Help Desk:

  • Domestic violence: Bring police reports, if applicable
  • Uncontested divorces: Bring proof of income so child support can be calculated
  • Adoptions: Bring any court documents related to custody of the child, if you have them

Civil Help Desk:

  • Debt collections and garnishments: Bring letters or notices from lenders, court documents, or pay stubs showing the garnishments
  • Bankruptcy: Bring the following:
    • Driver’s license or other valid identification
    • Names, addresses, amounts, and account numbers of everyone to whom you owe money (Example: house, car, family members, credit card companies, medical bills, taxes, student loans, etc.)
    • A list of all debt, current bills, and related documentation
    • Tax returns for last two years
    • Last 60 days of payroll stubs and proof of any other income in the last 6 months (if you had more than one employer, bring pay stubs from everyone you were paid by in the last 6 months)
    • Last 60 days of payroll stubs and proof of any other income for anyone living in your residence
    • Last 60 days of payroll stubs and proof of income from your spouse
    • Property Tax Appraisal of any real estate you own
    • Copy of divorce decree (if applicable) if you were divorced in last 6 years
    • Copies of any lawsuits, judgments, or garnishments against you
    • Unemployment or disability awards letter, if applicable
    • Three credit reports (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion)
  • Wills and life-planning documents:
    • To create a simple will, bring a list of your property and assets and contact information for who you want to be the executor of your estate
    • To probate an estate, bring death certificate
    • For a Power of Attorney, both the person giving and getting Power of Attorney must be present and have government identification
  • Small claims lawsuits: Bring documents connected to your claim, any documents you have filed in court or received from court, copies of judgments showing how much money you were awarded
  • Eviction defense: Bring a copy of your lease; any documents you have received from your landlord such as a Notice to Cure, Lease Termination Notice, and/or an Unlawful Detainer; any proof of rent payments
  • Unsafe housing: Bring a copy of your lease; any documentation you have of the problem such as photos, utility bills, or medical reports of conditions caused by inadequate housing
  • Municipal Fines and Fees
    • Bring copies of your ticket(s), if you have them, and any notices you have received from the court
    • Bring a letter from a social worker saying you are in a program or your program completion certificate, if applicable
    • If you do not have these documents, we will still try to assist you