The COVID Eviction Legal Help Project (CELHP) was formed to expand the capacity of legal aid organizations in Massachusetts, as well as the pro bono bar, to provide urgently needed legal assistance in COVID-related eviction cases.
CELHP will provide referrals, legal information, assistance and legal representation in Housing Court, and where capacity allows in District Courts and for tenants at risk of losing their subsidized housing. The goal of representation is to achieve housing stability.
Who is Providing Help?
The following six regional legal aid programs will assist low income tenants in that program’s geographic service area. To find the program that services your area, click here.
- Community Legal Aid (Berkshire, Franklin, Hampden, Hampshire and Worcester Counties)
- De Novo (Cambridge and Somerville)
- Greater Boston Legal Services (Greater Boston and Eastern Massachusetts)
- MetroWest Legal Services (Framingham, Metro West region and Southern Norfolk County)
- Northeast Legal Aid (Essex and Northern Middlesex Counties – Northeastern Massachusetts)
- South Coastal Counties Legal Services (Barnstable, Bristol, Dukes, Nantucket and Plymouth Counties, and the towns of Avon and Stoughton)
The Volunteer Lawyers Project is providing legal assistance for low-income owner-occupants of 2 and 3-family homes.
In mid-October 2020, Commonwealth engaged the Massachusetts Legal Assistance Corporation (MLAC) to administer a statewide coordinated legal services delivery system to deliver free legal assistance to income eligible tenants facing eviction due to COVID-19 and to income-eligible owner occupants of 2- and 3-family homes. MLAC is partnering with Massachusetts Law Reform Institute to implement the legal services component and the Volunteer Lawyers Project to implement the pro bono component for tenants and owner-occupants.
CELHP is part of the Massachusetts COVID Eviction Diversion Initiative.