Home » News & Updates

Category: News & Updates

Blake Refund Bureau Opens

In 2021, the Washington State Supreme Court’s decision known as State v. Blake found the Washington law criminalizing drug possession to be unconstitutional.  The Blake Refund Bureau is now accepting applications to refund court-ordered fines or costs paid in connection with drug possession convictions (including marijuana) affected by the Blake decision.

Think you may qualify?  Visti the Blake Refund Bureau website.  Here you can:

  • Learn about what qualifies as a Blake-related drug possession conviction
  • Learn what steps to take to begin your refund process
  • Find helpful resources (including a how-to video) on the application process

You can also access the application portal on this site once your conviction has been vacated.

For any additional questions beyond what’s provided on the Blake Refund Bureau webpage, or if you need help with any of the application steps, please contact the Blake Hotline at 360-704-1913.

There is additional information about the Blake decision and its impact in this Fox13 Seattle report and in this guide provided by WashingtonLawHelp.

Office Hours – Estate Planning (11/29/2023)

In this edition of KCLL’s Office Hours, we’re joined by local attorneys Evelyn Emanuel and April Benson to answer your questions about estate planning.

Office Hours is a recurring webcast where a panel of experts answer questions that attendees submit before the event.  You can see a list of upcoming events HERE.

Questions Addressed in this Hour:

  • 02:20 – Introductions
  • 05:03 – What IS estate planning?
  • 09:26 – Does a “durable power of attorney” include the right to make financial decisions?
  • 09:47 – What are some of the other popular estate planning instruments?
  • 12:36 – What is a living will?
  • 16:43 – What is a pour-over will?
  • 19:42 – What is a trust?
  • 21:19 – What is the difference between a trust and a life estate?
  • 28:38 – Can I change a revocable trust to an irrevocable trust?
  • 31:38 – How do you properly transfer property into a trust?
  • 36:51 – When is a special needs trust necessary? Are there alternatives?
  • 42:43 – What is the best option to leave assets to a disabled adult child while avoiding probate?
  • 43:47 – How can I pass life insurance proceeds into a minor’s trust?
  • 50:14 – How much of inheritance is tax-exempt?
  • 55:26 – What happens to a jointly held bank account when one of them dies?
  • 56:36 – How can I find a good lawyer to help me with my trust?

WTEW… in Small Claims Court (Part 5 – Judgments)

You’ve won your Small Claims Court case – now what?  A King County District Court Judge explains.

Video Highlights

  • 00:19 – What are judgments?
  • 00:46 – If I win, will I get money at the end of the trial?
  • 01:25 – How long do judgments last?
  • 01:39 – Do judgments accrue interest?
  • 02:13 – How do I go about collecting on a judgment?
  • 03:12 – Can I transfer a judgment to someone else for collection?

WTEW… in Small Claims Court (Part 4 – During Trial)

In Part 4 (of 5) on the Small Claims experience, a District Court Judge explains what you can expect during the trial.

Video Highlights

  • 00:24 – When does a small claims case go to trial?
  • 01:02 – What actually happens during the trial?
  • 02:30 – Who has the burden to convince the judge?
  • 05:54 – What is the evidence standard for Small Claims Court?
  • 03:31 – What happens if the plaintiff wins?
  • 04:06 – What happens if the defendant wins?
  • 04:46 – What can be done if someone disagrees with decision?

Free Bilingual Legal Clinics

In partnership with Latina/o Bar Association of Washington (LBAW) and King County Bar Association (KCBA), El Centro de la Raza sponsors free legal clinics on the second Wednesday of each month from their offices at Centilia Cultural Center. The volunteer attorneys provide general consultations on a variety of topics including immigration, family law, auto accidents, personal injury, worker’s rights/wage claims and criminal law. Bilingual attorneys and interpreters are available.

The clinics operate on a first-come, first-served basis.  Registration runs from 4:00PM – 6:00PM.  Consultations begin at 6:00PM.


For more information, please call (844) 502-9832.

Read the clinic’s brochure

WTEW… in Small Claims Court (Part 3 – Mediation)

In Part 3 (of 5) on Small Claims Court, a District Court Judge explains what you can expect from mediation.

Video Highlights

  • 00:28 – Why do parties have to go through mediation?
  • 00:49 – What are some of the advantages of going through mediation?
  • 01:52 – What is mediation like?
  • 02:21 – What are the possible outcomes of mediation?
  • 03:05 – How long does mediation take?
  • 03:37 – What are some additional advantages of mediation?


WTEW… in Small Claims Court (Part 2 – “Service of Process”)

This video addresses service of process in a Small Claims action – and what is necessary to initiate your suit.

Video Highlights

  • 00:17 – Introduction
  • 00:44 – What does “service of process” mean?
  • 01:16 – Who can serve the defendant?  
  • 01:35 – What are the different ways a person can be served?
  • 02:34 – Can a corporation be served?
  • 03:14 – Does the defendant have to arrange to be served?
  • 03:34 – What statutes should I review?
  • 04:12 – What is a “process server?”
  • 04:51 – What else should I know about service of process?

WTEW… in Small Claims Court (Part 1 – “Right Court, Right Claim”)

This series of five videos will introduce you to some key concepts that you should be aware of before you file your action in King County Small Claims Court.

Video Highlights

  • 00:30 – What IS the purpose of Small Claims Court?
  • 01:07 – What types of claims are allowed in Small Claims Court?
  • 02:08 – What types of claims are NOT allowed?
  • 03:54 – How much money can be claimed?
  • 04:33 – Might it be advisable to lower your damages claim so that you can use Small Claims Court?
  • 05:15 – When should I consult with an attorney?
  • 06:44 – How do you know if you’re suing the right person?
  • 07:22 – What are some examples of improper claims?
  • 09:45 – So what’s is the bottom line with “right court, right claim?”

Get Help With Protection Orders

Find the Right Help for Your Protection Order




The King County Domestic Violence Protection Order Advocacy Program helps people who need protection specifically from an intimate partner or spouse.




Seattle Unveristy’s Family Law Center helps people with domestic violence and other protection order situations.




WashingtonLawHelp.org has an online interview program which fills in the appropriate forms based on your answers to plain-language questions.




The King County Superior Court Clerk’s Civil Protection Order office is open for walk-ins and can provide you with free sets of the appropriate protection order paperwork.