Making the System Work for Modest-Means Clients
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Columbus Bar inc alum Mindy Yocum was recently profiled as a "Legal Rebel" by the American Bar Association. Mindy provides legal services aimed at people of modest means.
Click here to learn about her unique business model
Law School: Capital University Law School, 2015
Court Admissions: Ohio
Bar Memberships: CBA, OSBA, ABA
Why did you decide to be a solo attorney participating in Columbus Bar inc?
I first discovered the Columbus Bar Incubator program at the initial Columbus Bar welcome event hosted shortly after I was sworn in as an attorney. My husband had been trying to convince me to go out on my own, but I felt that I wasn’t ready and that I may not have the support that I needed. Although I had managed several businesses, I was not completely comfortable with the intricacies of running a law firm on my own. Then I discovered the Columbus Bar Incubator program. This program is the missing ingredient. It provides immeasurable resources for attorneys like myself, who have worldly experience and a legal education, but lack knowledge about things like IOLTA accounts, malpractice insurance, and fee agreements. I was thrilled when I saw this opportunity and knew it was a perfect fit for my firm and my goals.
What area(s) of law does your solo practice focus on?
My firm’s primary focus, right now, is to operate as a general practice firm that offers sliding scale attorney fees based on household income. I have handled everything from basic wills to Social Security Disability and Veteran’s benefits to criminal and traffic cases.
What made you choose your primary area of law?
During law school, I worked for a firm that handles Social Security Disability. I enjoyed the work tremendously, but I knew that I would be able to provide more help to the community if I was able to work on other types of legal issues. Although, I definitely feel more comfortable with administrative law, I find the challenge of taking on new types of cases and tackling different sorts of problems exciting.
What will make your law firm unique?
A 2009 nationwide study by the federally-funded Legal Services Corporation found that nationally, 80% of the legal needs of the poor go unmet -for the middle class that number is 40-60%. The problem is price. Because my firm offers sliding scale attorney fees, based on income, I am able to meet the needs of those who, traditionally, may not be able to afford an attorney. Not only does this help the average low and middle class person protect their rights, but it makes for a more efficient justice system.
Summary of previous employment:
I have spent the last several years in the legal field working for Barkan Meizlish and Attorney Marshall D. Cohen. Before law school, I spent a substantial period of time in supervisory and management roles with Teleperformance and Shamrock Golf Club.
Describe your personal interests and hobbies:
I love spending time with my husband and two sons (which usually involves sports, traveling and/or eating) and doing volunteer work for Dublin schools, Legal Aid, Operation Legal Help, and as a Board member for The Neighborhood House.