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Angela LovecchioAngela Lovecchio Receives "Honorable Thomas Wood Equal Access to Justice Award"

The Lycoming Law Association awarded the "Honorable Thomas Wood Equal Access to Justice Award", at the 2014 annual banquet.  This year's recipient was Angela Lovecchio.  In presenting the award, Danna Rich-Collins of North Penn Legal Services said the following:

For several years, the idea of having a “volunteer attorney of the day” at Legal Services office has been floated. On a few occasions we have tried it but schedules and other commitments have interfered and quite frankly the cases ended up going back to staff attorneys and increasing not decreasing their caseloads. The tide has turned.

Last year, we were fortunate to have three attorneys volunteer a day a week at our Williamsport office. The attorneys would take cases, mainly in landlord tenant, consumer, PFA and Family law matters. One of these attorneys , who has continued her volunteerism is still with us.

She generally comes in on Tuesdays. She takes cases that come in that day and others that have been assigned to her during the week and could wait for her arrival. The intention was to give her cases that could be handled by brief service, ie information, negotiation, advice only. If the cases required actual representation at a hearing or extensive representation we envisioned it would be transferred to one of our staff. Much to our surprise and gratitude, she kept those cases and went to the hearings, made home visits, saw the clients multiple times, gave them her cell number and dealt with issues on days she was otherwise involved with guardianship work, her private practice and so forth.

She also attends litigation meetings on Tuesdays in our office. These are opportunities for staff from Williamsport and other North Penn Offices to come together and discuss cases in which there are issues that advocates would like input from fellow advocates. Her insight, experience in areas of the law that Legal Services does not deal with, and her knowledge of the community has been extremely helpful to us.

She has taken on cases that were new to her as far as the legal areas and delves into learning the law in those areas, consulting with the “experts” and thoroughly preparing herself. She has undertaken representation in Mortgage cases and participates in the diversion program. She represents individuals in PFAs and, as stated, has an extensive caseload in the Landlord Tenant area.

In addition to representing clients, she is a cheerleader for Legal Services. She sees the need for our clients to get access to justice and she recruits help for us and is always brainstorming to find ways to provide more resources to legal services clients. She is also one of the biggest contributors to our FREE box in our waiting room.

I will let the words of those she served act as final testimony :

  • Goal –to be allowed time to move all my families belongings from the home we rented for 15 years. Angela Lovecchio was an absolutely outstanding thinker . Glad to have been led to her. Mrs. Lovecchio real people with great character and moral (humane) standards in my opinion. Thank you, Angela.
  • She was very good with me and my case. Anytime I had a question on something she was sure to get me an answer.
  • My goal was to keep him from hitting me—she was a great lawyer
  • Mrs. Lovecchio did an exceptional job. We cannot thank her enough for helping us.
  • Mrs. Lovecchio was a great help and understanding. I am glad this service is available to people like me who can’t afford legal—it is a comfort to know there are people to help!!!!!!!

This is a small sampling of the Client evaluations that we have gotten but they are all pretty much the same tone. In the time that she has volunteered with us, 13 months at the end of 2013, she has handled 57 pro bono cases for our office.

Thank you to this year’s recipient of the Honorable Thomas Wood Equal Access to Justice Award—Angela Campana Lovecchio.