At Dickinson Wright, we recognize that some of the most important work we do does not involve corporate clients, multimillion-dollar deals or high-stakes litigation. Our commitment to pro bono work is not limited to a particular cause or type of organization. Below are overviews of just a few of the ways our lawyers show their continuing commitment to our fellow citizens who cannot afford legal services:
The dramatic rise in home foreclosures has hit the Metro Detroit area and other parts of the nation hard. Often, foreclosed homes sit vacant and depress the value of their surrounding neighborhood as they became blighted or turned into hubs of criminal activity. Therefore, Dickinson Wright helped create a program and accompanying legal agreements to help stem the tide of vacancies. Our goal was to work with all stakeholders to create supportive occupancy in foreclosed homes so that instead of turning into vacancies, these homes could be occupied by their former owners.
Our services included development of presentations to representatives of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, national lenders and servicers; working pamphlets, descriptions and letters; and a formal legal agreement to be entered into between the financial institution and the former home owner.
We are currently representing an abused woman who entered the country on a fiancée visa and, and after being married here in the U.S. she was abused, abandoned and divorced by her U.S. citizen husband. She is attempting to secure permanent residency in the U.S. We have submitted the I-360 (VAWA) petition to USCIS (Immigration Services) and are now responding to the agency's request for more evidence of abuse. Our goal is to assure that our client will be able to remain in the United States and that her ex-husband will neither be able to abuse her nor rob her of the American dream.
Our client, the single mother of six young children, was forcibly and wrongfully evicted from her family home by an overzealous mortgage company that failed to obtain the requisite court order, leaving the client and her children homeless and without any of their possessions. The mortgage company not only violated the law, but it completely disregarded the affects of its actions on the family. We obtained a favorable monetary settlement from the mortgage company that allowed our client and her family to get back on their feet.
Dickinson Wright has been involved in start-up matters for the Detroit Land Bank Authority, ranging from the creation of articles and bylaws for the Authority to tax and opinion representations. We are proud to have placed a role in establishing the foundation for the Authority’s ongoing operations and we continue to be involved with the DLBA in its efforts to acquire land bank, renovate and sell vacant and foreclosed residences as part of a massive revitalization initiative occurring in the City of Detroit.