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June 15, 2010

Pro Bono Not Limited to Litigation

Daily Journal | By Susan McRae


When lawyers think of pro bono, they usually think of litigation or maybe helping out in adoption or political asylum cases. Less known are the opportunities to do transactional pro bono work.

Earlier this month, 50 summer associates from nearly two dozen major law firms attended a seminar in downtown Los Angeles on the benefits of doing corporate pro bono work.

The program included an overview of tax-exempt laws and rganizations - from the 17th century Statute of Charitable Uses enacted by the British Parliament to the 21st century formation of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation - and the basics of forming and advising non-profits.

The program is the brainchild of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom in collaboration with Public Counsel and the Los Angeles County Bar Association. As far as anyone involved in the program knows, it is the only one of its kind in the nation.

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