Category: News & Updates

Motor Vehicle Repossessions: Advice from NCLC

This article, Motor Vehicle Repossessions: Consumer Debt Advice from NCLC, is the third in a series of articles from NCLC (National Consumer Law Center) that provide advice for families in financial difficulty. The Consumer Debt Advice series, targeted directly to the consumer, includes information about legal rights and best strategies for dealing with debt.

The focus of this article is on motor vehicle repossession including limits on self-help repossessions, ten strategies to prevent repossessions, six steps to take after your car is repossessed, and advice on responding to the creditor’s demand for additional payment even after the repossession. Far more detail with legal citations is found in NCLC’s Repossessions, a comprehensive legal treatise on consumer rights when dealing with motor vehicle repossessions.

You can read the full article on the NCLC Digital Library website by clicking on any of the links in this post or by following this address: https://library.nclc.org/motor-vehicle-repossessions-consumer-debt-advice-nclc.

Real Change’s New Resource Guide for Homelessness

Real Change released Seattle’s The Emerald City Resource Guide in April 2018. This new pocket-size resource guide is intended to help homeless people navigate a spiderweb of resources in King County. You can download The Emerald City Resource Guide here.

A common refrain in homeless services is that Seattle’s strength — a large number of nonprofits working to take care of homeless people — is also its weakness. In 2017, King County was home to 77 organizations that shelter or house homeless people. That’s 25 more than the city of San Francisco, and more than the entire state of Montana.

If you’re homeless, navigating this vast network can be hard. That’s why Real Change released a pocket guide to services for homeless people.

“Real Change is printing 40,000 copies of this Emerald City Resource Guide, a 132-page booklet they hope homeless people will use to navigate the city’s spiderweb of resources.” (Photo courtesy of Real Change)

This durable and comprehensive pocket-sized booklet puts 132 slim pages of essential resources at the fingertips of homeless and very low-income people. New editions of the Emerald City Resource Guide will be published at least annually to keep services reliable and accurate.

The guidebook will list services such as health care, shelters and meals — and also features special sections for help with LGBTQ resources, culturally specific services and assistance with immigration issues.

The Emerald City Resource Guide complements online service listings that already exist by making the information immediately accessible to those who lack consistent access to technology.

According to Real Change Director Tim Harris, “I recently heard the story of a woman at a bus stop late at night, when she was approached by a young woman looking for a place to stay that night. The young woman didn’t have a cell phone, and by that time libraries were closed and she had nowhere to turn to look up local shelters. The first woman quickly searched through her phone, and was able to point the young woman in the right direction. If she had a guidebook, she said, she would have been able to hand the young woman a copy, connecting her to more support opportunities.”

“This is our vision on the Emerald City Resource Guide: a pocket-sized portal to change. As someone flips through the guidebook, looking for a shelter, maybe they’ll pass an entry on drug treatment services, or a job readiness program, and inspiration will spark.” – Real Change Director, Tim Harris

This pilot guidebook was made possible by a $20,000 Seattle Human Services Department Innovation Grant, $12,000 in sponsorships from a wide variety of partners, and around $4,000 of Real Change’s own money. Current sponsors of the Resource Guide include: 2-1-1, YWCA, Amerigroup Washington, Muslim Association of Puget Sound, Neighborcare Health, Jewish Family Service, DESC, Solid Ground, Evergreen Treatment Services, Pike Place Market Senior Center, Recovery Café, ROOTS and Community Health Plan of WA.

Read more about this new resource in Real Change News: Director’s Corner or The Seattle Times.

New Domestic Cause of Action Granting Relatives the Right to Seek Visits with a Child

Washington State SB 5598 (companion bill HB 2117) 2017-18 amends RCW 26.10.160 and adds a new chapter to Title 26. The new law allows for grandparents and other relatives by blood or marriage (including step-family members) the ability to seek an order regarding visits with a child who is not their biological child. This law goes into effect on June 7, 2018.

The following is King County related information about this new cause of action:

  • A new set of statewide pattern forms will be made available from the Washington State Office of the Administrator for the Courts, including:
    • Petition for Visits,
    • Response to Petition,
    • Motion for Advanced Lawyer Fees & Costs,
    • Order After Review of Petition, and
    • Final Order and Findings on Petition.
  • When those new statewide pattern forms are complete, you may find them here: https://www.courts.wa.gov/forms/?fa=forms.static&staticID=14#FamLawForms
  • Cases may be initiated upon the filing of a Petition for Visits. This is a new cause of action.
  • The domestic filing fee of $260 applies.
  • Cases will receive a case schedule and will be assigned to the Chief Unified Family Court (UFC) Judge, Judge Rietschel.
  • The Chief UFC Judge will conduct an in camera review hearing to determine whether the case will go forward. If the case moves forward, the Chief UFC Judge will assign it to a UFC Department judge for trial. Both the in camera review hearing and trial date are set via the case schedule issued at the time of filing.

Dealing With Medical Debt: Advice from NCLC

This article, Dealing with Medical Debt: Consumer Advice from NCLC, is the first in a series of articles from NCLC (National Consumer Law Center) that provide advice for families in financial difficulty. The Consumer Debt Advice series, targeted directly to the consumer, includes information about legal rights and best strategies for dealing with debt.

The first article in the series focuses on medical debt, including debt owed to hospitals, doctors, dentists, and other providers. Far more detail with legal citations on consumer rights dealing with medical debt is found in National Consumer Law Center, Collection Actions Chapter 9, updated at www.nclc.org/library.

Upcoming Class: Civil Lawsuits Without Tears – The Basics of Representing Yourself in Court

Representing yourself in court is a complicated process and can be overwhelming. In this workshop, you will learn the basics of the civil lawsuit process with a focus on court rules, court procedures, forms, scheduling, and deadlines. Attendees will be granted access to a password protected website with additional information and resources, including the most commonly used civil litigation forms.

This class does not cover immigration proceedings or criminal proceedings such as DUI or felony and misdemeanor offenses.

The workshop will be 90 minutes and will run from 6-7:30pm.

*Registration is Required!* Register online here or call KCLS at 253.859.3330.

When: Tuesday, July 17th, 2018

Where:

Kent Regional Library
212 2nd Avenue North
Kent, WA 98032
Phone: (206) 253.859.3330

Get Directions

Suitable for: Adults

Language: English

Find more information on the King County Library System web site.

Upcoming Class: Civil Law Suits without Tears – The Basics of Representing Yourself in Court

Representing yourself in court is a complicated process and can be overwhelming. In this workshop, you will learn the basics of the civil lawsuit process with a focus on court rules, court procedures, forms, scheduling, and deadlines. Attendees will be granted access to a password protected website with additional information and resources, including the most commonly used civil litigation forms.

Common civil lawsuit types include landlord tenant, family law, wills and probate, garnishment of wages, personal injury, and property disputes, just to name a few. This class does not cover immigration proceedings or criminal proceedings such as DUI or felony and misdemeanor offenses.

The workshop will be 90 minutes and will run from 6-7:30pm.

When: Wednesday, April 18th, 2018 (6:00PM – 7:30PM)

Where: SPL (Seattle Public Library) Central Library, Level 4 Room 2

1000 4th Avenue
Seattle, WA 98104
Level 4, Room 2
Phone: (206) 386-4636

Get Directions

Suitable for: Adults

Language: English

Download a class flyer here.

Find more information on the Seattle Public Library Website.

New Seattle Library Hours

Beginning Monday, April 2nd, the Seattle library branch, located inside the King County Courthouse, will observe new hours of operation:

Monday – Friday: 8:00am – 4:30pm

Please note that these changes will affect the Seattle library branch only.

Should you have any questions about these upcoming changes, please do not hesitate to contact us.

New Class: Civil Litigation without Tears – The Basics of Representing Yourself in Court

Representing yourself in court is a complicated process and can be overwhelming. In this workshop you will learn the basics of the civil litigation process with a focus on court rules, court procedures, forms, scheduling, and deadlines. Attendees will receive blank copies of some of the most commonly used civil litigation forms and will be granted access to a password protected website with additional information and resources. (Note: This class does not cover criminal litigation.)

The workshop will be 90 minutes and will run from 7-8:30pm.

When: Thursday, March 15, 2018 (7:00PM – 8:30PM)

Where: Kent Branch of the King County Library System

212 2nd Avenue North
Kent, WA 98032
Phone: (253) 859-3330

Get Directions

**Registration is Required.** Register online at the KCLS website.

Suitable for: Adults

Language: English

New Kent Library Hours

Beginning Wednesday, February 14th, the Kent library branch, located inside the Maleng Regional Justice Center, will close every day from 2pm – 3pm for lunch.

Starting March 1st, the Kent library branch will observe new hours of operations:

Monday – Friday: 8:30am – 4:30pm; closed from 2pm – 3pm for lunch.

Please note that these changes will affect the Kent library branch only; there will not be any changes to the hours of operation for the Seattle branch.

Should you have any questions about these upcoming changes, please do not hesitate to contact us.

 

DACA Legal Clinics and Resources

On Sept. 5, 2017, the Trump Administration announced that it would be ending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program as of March 5, 2018.

Update – January 16, 2018: USCIS has posted instructions on how it will begin accepting DACA renewal applications in response to a federal judge’s decision. This only applies to individuals who already have had DACA granted in the past and not to people who would like to pursue initial applications. Here is a link to their announcement. In addition, the Mission Asset Fund has announced that they are accepting applications for scholarships to pay for the renewal application fee at this link.

What is DACA? What are Dreamers?

Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) has been a program established by President Obama in 2012 that granted a temporary protection from deportation known as “deferred action” to undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. before the age of 16, resided in the U.S. since June 2007, and met other requirements. The 787,580 people protected under this program have been referred to as “Dreamers.”

For more general information on DACA and Dreamers in the news today, check out this article from the Guardian.

What does this mean for folks living in Washington?

The National Immigration Law Center (NILC) has put together the following community advisory for community members interested in renewing their DACA applications.

City of Seattle DACA Resources – Several helpful resources from the City of Seattle

DACA Information – Spanish – Courtesy of Seattle.gov

DACA Information – Traditional Chinese – Courtesy of Seattle.gov

DACA Information – Vietnamese – Courtesy of Seattle.gov

DACA Information – Korean – Courtesy of Seattle.gov

About DACA and Employment – from National Immigrant Law Center

Mental Health Toolkit – from United We Dream

State Financial Aid for Undocumented Immigrant Youth – from Ready Set Grad

List of Scholarships that Don’t Require Proof of U.S. Citizenship or Legal Permanent Residency – from Educators for Fair Consideration

DACA and Workplace Rights – from National Immigration Law Center

Deferred Action Policy Explanation & What to do NOW – from Immigrant Legal Resource Center

Understanding the Criminal Bars to Deferred Action – from Immigrant Legal Resource Center

Proceso de Accion Diferida a Favor de los Jovenes Indocumentados – from National Immigration Law Center & United We Dream Network

What Does Obama’s Directive on “Direct Action” Mean for Me? In Urdu, Korean, Chinese, Bengali – from Asian American Legal Defense & Education Fund

Information from Federal Agencies

Updated Information from USCIS – from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services

Information Regarding Social Security Numbers and DACA – from U.S. Social Security Administration

Department of Education Resource Guide for Undocumented Students – from the US Department of Education

The Northwest Immigrant Rights Project and the City of Seattle also have DACA webpages with current information, resources and listings of free legal clinics.

Contact Your Representatives

Stay in the Loop

For the most up-to-date information on the status of DACA, be sure to visit the Seattle Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs DACA resource page.