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Pro Bono Opportunities for Attorneys

The Eastern District of Wisconsin has pro bono opportunities, primarily in prisoner civil rights cases. The court recruits attorneys for limited purposes, such as representing a civil pro se litigant in mediation, as well as for full representation. Wisconsin SCR 31.05(7) states that an attorney may claim one CLE credit for every five hours of pro bono work, up to six credits per reporting period. Below are the cases that the court is currently recruiting for. For more information on a case, please contact the court's pro se staff attorneys at ProSeStaffAttorneys@wied.uscourts.gov.

The court is currently looking for pro bono volunteers for the following cases:

Pleading/Early Litigation

  • Love v. Kuber, 20-cv-1000-LA. The court is looking for a lawyer to assist a prisoner plaintiff in drafting an amended complaint and to represent him through all phases of the litigation. The plaintiff has two other cases pending in this court in which he is represented by counsel. Please see Judge Adelman’s screening order. The attorney would likely need to coordinate with the plaintiff's other attorney to avoid duplicating claims in this lawsuit.  

Mediation

  • Pletcher v. Sparkplug Capital, LLC, 20-cv-811-LA. The pro se plaintiffs in this case are suing defendant for physical injuries sustained by Ms. Pletcher as she was moving an item out of a rental unit. The court is looking for a lawyer to assist the pro se plaintiffs in mediating this case.  Mediation will be held before Magistrate Judge Nancy Joseph.

  • Miller v. Whitman, et al., 19-cv-1399-BHL. The pro se prisoner plaintiff is proceeding with claims that medical care providers at the Fox Lake Correctional Institution were deliberately indifferent and/or negligent towards his amputated left hand.  The Court is looking for a lawyer to assist the pro se plaintiff in mediating the case.  Mediation will be held before Magistrate Judge William Callahan. 

  • Evans v. Douglas, et al., 17-cv-1133-LA. Section 1983 claim. The court is looking for a lawyer to represent a prisoner who alleges that several correctional officers subjected him to inhumane conditions of confinement while he was a pretrial detainee at the Milwaukee County Jail in 2011. The court granted in part and denied in part the defendants' motion for summary judgment. Please see Judge Adelman's decision and order. Discovery has closed and will not reopen. The lawyer would represent the plaintiff in mediation proceedings before a magistrate judge. The court would prefer, but it is not necessary, that the lawyer remain on the case for trial if mediation is unsuccessful.

Discovery, Draft/Respond to Dispositive Motions, and Pursue Settlement

  • Benjamin v. Sanchez, 18-cv-570-PP. The pro se plaintiff sues a nurse at the Milwaukee Mental Health Complex who he alleges forcibly medicated him against his will. The court is looking for a lawyer to assist the plaintiff in conducting discovery, drafting and/or responding to a motion for summary judgment, and (if necessary) pursuing settlement or trial. The plaintiff currently is incarcerated at Waupun Correctional Institution. Please see Chief Judge Pepper's screening order for more information. 
  • Guerra v. Brooks, 20-cv-748-PP. The pro se plaintiff filed this lawsuit alleging false arrest and unlawful search in violation of the Fourth Amendment. Officers made the arrest after he refused to stop video recording an active traffic stop. Please see Chief Judge Pepper’s screening order. The court is looking for a lawyer to assist the plaintiff in evaluating his claims and with the discovery process. In addition, the plaintiff may need assistance responding to a summary judgment motion or at trial. While this is not a prisoner/conditions of confinement case, the plaintiff filed this lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. §1983 and is currently incarcerated in the Fond du Lac County Jail.

  • Bahling v. Nelson, 21-cv-304-BHL. The court is recruiting a lawyer to represent a prisoner plaintiff through resolution of this case. Prior to incarceration, plaintiff had a hinge placed in his elbow, which he shattered in a fall. Plaintiff alleges the surgeon recommended the hinge be removed after three months.  After plaintiff was incarcerated, another surgeon allegedly delayed removing the hinge for many months and did not do so until after the hinge wore through plaintiff's skin.  There has been no discovery, and all case deadlines are stayed pending the court's efforts to recruit counsel.  Please see Judge Ludwig's screening order for more information. 

 Trial 

  • McCaa v. Baumann, 20-cv-30-NJ. Section 1983 claim. The court is looking for a lawyer to represent a prisoner who alleges that the defendant failed to stop his suicide attempts. The court denied the defendant's motion for summary judgment. Please see Judge Joseph's decision and order. The lawyer would represent the plaintiff at trial or in potential mediation or settlement discussions.