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When They Lock You Up For Fare-beating

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The Association of the Bar of the City of New York Legal Referral Service
212-626-7373 (English)
212-626-7374 (Spanish)

Maybe it's the principle of the thing -- or maybe you'd like to keep your legal record spotless for professional reasons. Well, you might not have known it, but you have a team of lawyers at your disposal. The Legal Referral Service keeps ten attorneys manning the lines at all times, ready to make you feel as looked-after as Patricia Duff. But only a third of the calls that come in are referred to a lawyer in private practice, says Allen Charne, who runs the service. The service has hundreds of other resources that may be put to work to solve your problem, from Budget Credit Counseling Service to the New York Civil Liberties Union. Should you decide you would like a private mouthpiece, "the lawyers listed by us include some of the most experienced lawyers in the city," says Charne, "except that they agree not to charge more than $25 for an initial consultation, and that money goes back to the referral service." A bargain from the legal profession? Ms. Duff, are you reading this?

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