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Miller Nash Forms Pro Bono Clinic to Help Give Oregonians a Fresh Start

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Miller Nash is proud to partner with Coos Bay Oregon Law Center and Central Oregon Legal Aid Services of Oregon to form a virtual volunteer attorney clinic to assist Oregonians with expunging eligible criminal convictions and dismissals. Many Oregonians face barriers in obtaining employment, housing, and education due to past minor criminal convictions and dismissals. The clinic aims to remove those barriers, giving Oregonians a fair opportunity to make a living, take care of their families, and fully participate in their communities. The clinic serves the low-income communities in Central Oregon, including Crook, Deschutes, and Jefferson counties.

Beginning in 2022, the Oregon state legislature passed a bipartisan law to make it more accessible for people to get their criminal convictions expunged. Among other things, the law removes the cost of filing fees (originally, $281 per case), reduces the timeline for eligible convictions and dismissals, and simplifies the process. Due to these recent changes, demand for expungement assistance has increased significantly.

Miller Nash attorneys Jollee Patterson and John Clarke formed the expungement clinic to address the demand for expungement assistance and help low-income Oregonians get eligible convictions and dismissals off their records.

“We are so grateful to partner with the team at Miller Nash to provide expungement services to Oregonians in need,” said Jill Mallery, the Statewide Pro Bono Manager of Legal Aid Services of Oregon. “Expunging eligible criminal convictions and dismissals is something concrete that we can do to significantly improve the lives of the people we serve.”

Attorneys and paralegals from across the firm have volunteered to participate in the clinic, including Katie Bennett, Nathalie Bougenies, Erin Burris, Erica Clausen, Lisa Conrad, Linda Degman, Delfina Homen, Anthony Hunt, Alex Hutchinson, Ashleigh Miller, Jeff Miller, Melissa Rawlinson, David Rice, Alison Roth, Matthew Tripp, Blakely Vogel, and Sophie von Bergen. Miller Nash is grateful for clinic partners, Coos Bay Oregon Law Center and Central Oregon Legal Aid Services of Oregon, and all the work they do to help provide equitable access to justice to the Oregon community.