Bar Association Offers Flood-Damaged Houston Free Legal Help

The Houston Bar Association, responding to recent flooding that hit the city, has expanded its legal-services hotline to assist those who suffered property damage. The hotline, staffed by volunteers, is a long-standing community benefit.

The bouts of flooding that hit Houston over the past two weeks created a need for legal services among the city’s residents.

Fortunately, the Houston Bar Association (HBA) is ready to help. This week, the association is running a hotline offering free legal advice to those now dealing with property damage or insurance claims. The hotline—open during business hours between May 2 and May 6—will also allow people to call as late as 9 p.m on Wednesday.

“We recognize that many people in Houston will have a need for legal advice on how to deal with the damage they experienced,” HBA president Laura Gibson said in a recent news release.

The association’s offering isn’t entirely new. For more than 30 years, HBA has offered LegalLine [PDF], a twice-monthly hotline for local residents looking for legal advice. A version of the volunteer-run program is also available for Spanish-language speakers, thanks to assistance from the Mexican American Bar Association and the Hispanic Bar Association.

The historic flooding from storms that hit the Houston area two weeks ago has caused long-term headaches for local residents. Some major roadways remain closed because of the flooding.

The April 18 storm dropped more than 16 inches of rain on some parts of Houston. At George Bush Intercontinental Airport, nearly 10 inches of rain fell, the second-highest total ever recorded at the airport. The storm led to at least seven deaths and more than 1,000 flooded homes throughout the region.

The city may not have a chance to dry out yet. AccuWeather reports that more heavy rain is expected to hit the area this week.

Flood waters shown in Fort Bend County, Texas on April 19. (Texas DOT/Reuters)

Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a former senior editor for Associations Now. MORE

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