Help Those Hardest Hit by the COVID-19 Pandemic

The coronavirus pandemic is wreaking a path of devastation across our state and around the world. Everyone is concerned about those they love, their colleagues, and their friends. We are too.

We are deeply worried about those urgently in need of legal services as a result of the outbreak and the economic impact. 

We anticipate spikes in legal needs associated with:

  • Consumer debt assistance due to unmanageable medical bills, funeral expenses, and other unexpected expenditures.
  • Domestic violence victims and abused LGBTQ+ youth who have been sheltering in place with their abusers.
  • Unemployed and low-wage workers who need help navigating a complex system to obtain basic sustenance benefits.
  • Small businesses and law firms require help to access federal loans and other relief so that they and their employees can continue to have a livelihood.

We are also concerned about our state’s legal services providers. At a time when their services are in great demand, New York’s already overburdened legal services organizations are struggling to continue operations offsite while meeting a world of new clients’ needs.

In response, the New York Bar Foundation is launching a COVID-19 Emergency Legal Relief Fund. Donations to the fund will assist New Yorkers all across our great state in recovering from the impacts of COVID-19 through our grant program.

An anonymous gift has been made by a Foundation Board member to match gifts up to the first $7,000, in recognition of these urgent needs and in honor of our 70th anniversary.  An additional match of $3,000 has been made. We have also received gifts from the NYSBA 50+ Section, Business Law Section, Commercial and Federal Litigation Section, Entertainment, Arts. and Sports Law Section, the Elder Law and Special Needs Section, and the Trusts and Estates Section and are working toward a goal of $100,000.  We will begin disbursing grants in late June.

Please use this link to give today

Together, we can help our neighbors facing urgent legal needs because of the pandemic!


Thank you for your support,

Lesley Rosenthal

President, The New York Bar Foundation

Carla Palumbo

Vice President, The New York Bar Foundation


For more information about The New York Bar Foundation visit








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