LawHelp Interactive Terms of Use

Pro Bono Net, Inc. (PBN, for short) is a New York non-profit corporation that provides this website as a free service to:

  • Low-income people,
  • Lawyers and their staff giving not-for-profit or reduced-fee legal help to low-income people,
  • Lawyers acting on a not-for-profit basis on behalf of a non-profit or charitable organization, and
  • Court employees at courts authorized by PBN to help eligible users use this site.

 

When you use this website you agree to all of the terms listed below. Please read them carefully. Also check this page periodically because PBN updates these terms from time to time. All updates become effective when posted.

Using this site means you agree to review and follow these:

  • Terms of Use,
  • All updates, and
  • Other rules posted at this site.

Together, these terms, updates, and other rules form the complete agreement between you and PBN. The most recent version always supersedes any previous version, whether oral or written.

Click on any section:

  • PBN Is Not Your Lawyer
  • Who May Use This Site
  • Not for Commercial Use
  • User Information
  • No Illegal Activity
  • PBN’s Ownership Rights
  • Follow PBN's Rules
  • Privacy
  • Confidentiality
  • Closing Your Account
  • Links
  • No Technical Support
  • Disclaimer

Legal Claims and Procedures

  • Limited Liability
  • Indemnification
  • Arbitration
  • Jurisdiction
  • Enforcing PBN's Rights
  • Third Party Rights
  • Severability

Contributed Materials

  • Ownership and Use of Contributed Materials
  • Rules for Contributing Materials.
  • Third Party Copyrights
  • No Soliciting

Additional Terms for Advocates and Court Employees

  • Not-for-Profit Use by Advocates and Court Staff
  • Advocate Responsibilities
  • Ethics Notice for Advocates
  • Confidentiality and Attorney-Client Privilege

 

  1. PBN Is Not Your Lawyer.

You are not PBN’s client. This website gives you information, not legal advice. We do not warrant or guarantee that the information on this website is accurate or up-to-date. When you use this site, you do so at your own risk.

Because this website is not a lawyer, it cannot:

  • Give you advice, opinions, or recommendations about your rights or your case
  • Apply the law to the facts of your case
  • Make conclusions about your case
  • Tell you if your answers are legally sufficient
  • Tell you about possible defenses, choices, or outcomes
  • Choose or review your court forms, or
  • Represent or protect your or your Advocate’s interests. (An Advocate is a lawyer who works for a non-profit organization and helps you with your case.)

For legal advice about your case, you should see a lawyer. Documents created using this website may require consultation with a lawyer prior to signing or filing.

By using this website, you agree that:

  • You will not detrimentally rely on any information received from this website,
  • You do not have the right to make a claim that you were harmed because you used this website
  • Use of this website does not create any attorney-client relationship or any other fiduciary relationship between you and the Provider, and
  • To use this website in accordance with the laws of the jurisdiction where you are located.
  1. Who May Use This Site.

To use any part of this website, you must be:

  • 13 or older, and
  • Legally able to agree to the terms of using this website or use the website with a guardian or other representative who is able to legally agree to the terms of using this website.

You may use this site if you:

  • Use it only for your own legal problem, or if you are an authorized Advocate, only for your clients’ legal problem*
  • Do not let anyone else use your account,
  • Do not use it for any commercial purpose, and
  • Credit PBN as the source of any information from this site, either by copyright or attribution.
  • Consent to having any data you provide to PBN, including personal data, transferred to and processed in the United States

Warning! PBN can cancel your account at any time if you do not follow these Terms of Use. 

* Additional Terms of Use for Advocates appear below.  

  1. Not for Commercial Use.

This site was created for:

  • Low-income people,
  • Lawyers and their staff who serve low-income people at non-profits or reduced fee legal aid agencies,
  • Lawyers acting on a not-for-profit basis on behalf of a non-profit or charitable organization,
  • People involved in cases at courts that PBN has authorized, and
  • Authorized court employees who are helping eligible users.

You may not use this site for any commercial purpose.

Unless PBN gives you its written permission, you may not reproduce, copy, change, publish, display, distribute any part of this website, except as allowed by the terms of this agreement.

Warning! Do not use this site to practice law if you are not a lawyer. If you do, you may face criminal and civil charges for practicing law without a license.

  1. User information.

To use certain parts of this site, you must provide your registration information, including a username and password. The information you provide must be correct and complete, and you must update it if any of that information changes.

To use this site, you must agree to:

  • Use your chosen username and password when you access the site,
  • Not let anyone else use your username or password to access this site,
  • Be liable for anyone who accesses the site with your user information, and
  • Protect your user information so that others cannot use it.

Protect Your Password: Do not use your name, birthday, a single word, or other information that is easy to guess. Instead, use a string of letters and numbers or a phrase. 

If you suspect someone is using your login information, contact us right away at: lhi@probono.net.

  1. No Illegal Activity.

PBN may investigate complaints and reported violations. If we suspect illegal or inappropriate activity, we may report it to law enforcement officials, regulators, or other parties. We may disclose user information of anyone or any entity involved in that activity, including: user profiles, e-mail addresses, usage history, posted materials, IP addresses, and traffic information.

You must not use this site in any way that New York law, U.S. law, or the laws of your state define as illegal.

Do not use this website to:

  • Upload content that is illegal, harmful, threatening, abusive, harassing, defamatory, vulgar, obscene, invasive of someone’s privacy, hateful, or racially, ethnically objectionable, or wrongful in some other way
  • Harm a child in any way
  • Misrepresent your affiliation with a person or agency or impersonate a person or agency, including PBN or its staff
  • Upload content that you do not have a right to transmit, including information from fiduciary relationships, such as inside information, proprietary and confidential information learned or disclosed as part of employment relationships or under nondisclosure agreements
  • Upload content that infringes, misappropriates, or in any way violates a party’s patent, trademark, trade secret, copyright or other proprietary rights
  • Stalk or harass someone
  • Use any function of this website to collect or store personal data about other users unless PBN and the user(s) have authorized you to do so
  1. PBN’s Ownership Rights.

This website is protected by copyrights, trademarks, trade dress, service marks, patents and other proprietary rights and laws. PBN alone owns its copyrights to this site’s layout, graphics, navigation design, source code, the collective and compiled copyrights in its databases, and all other content created by PBN employees, contractors, consultants, and contributors to this site.

Using this site gives you NO rights or license of any kind to this website, its software, or its content. You may not use PBN’s trademarks, service marks, or trade dress in any way, including in:

  • Services or products not owned by PBN,
  • A way that causes confusion or implies that PBN sponsors, endorses, or is connected to your own activities, products, or services,
  • Hidden or embedded text in web pages, or
  • A way that is critical of PBN or this website.
  1. Follow PBN's Rules.

To use this site you must follow these Terms unless you get PBN’s express written permission to do otherwise.

Do not:

  • Upload unsolicited or unauthorized advertising, promotional materials, junk mail, spam, chain letters, pyramid schemes, or other form of solicitation, except in areas designated for that purpose
  • Upload material that contains software viruses or any other computer code, files or programs designed to interrupt, destroy or limit the functionality of any computer software, hardware, or telecommunications equipment
  • Interfere with this website or the servers and networks connected to this site
  • Disobey any requirement, procedure, policy or regulation of a network connected to this site

You must not use any part of this site, its content, or its underlying programs to:

  • Decompile, extract or disassemble our source code
  • Copy, change, reproduce, republish, distribute, display, or transmit for commercial, non-profit or public purposes any part of this site, its content or its software, except as allowed by other terms of this agreement
  • Rent, lease, loan, sell, sublicense, or create derivative works from this site, except as allowed by the terms of this agreement
  • Use software or other method to monitor or copy our site or software
  • Determine the site architecture or extract information about usage, users, or their identities
  • Use, export, or re-export any part of this website or its content in violation of U.S. export control laws

You must not use any material owned by PBN or licensed to PBN by a third party for any use, especially not for any commercial use. This includes:

  • Text, forms, documents, images, graphics, logos, or button icons
  • Any other material or information you get from a PBN’s contributors
  • Other content or copyright material owned by PBN or a PBN contributor
  • Any PBN trademark, service mark, or logo
  1. Privacy. To use this site you must agree to PBN’s privacy policy.
  2. Confidentiality.

PBN takes reasonable steps to keep your information confidential. Warning! Other people involved in your case may be able to use the legal system to access the information you provide at this site.

  1. Closing Your Account.

You may:

  • Delete any answer files saved to this site, and
  • Close your account at this site.

You may also have your registration information deleted from our database by contacting: lhi@probono.net. Send your request from the email address you used to register.

PBN may terminate or suspend your license to this website at any time for any reason, without notice to you.

PBN may also close this website at any time for any reason, without notice to you.

  1. Links.

Links to other websites

This website may list links to other websites. We do this for your convenience only. When you click on a link to other websites, you leave this website.  Those links are not a recommendation or approval of those sites or their owners and those websites are not under PBN’s control. We are not responsible for those websites, the information, services or products they may offer, or any loss or damage you may have at those sites.

Links to this website

Unless you have our written permission to do so, you may not link to this website from another website. If we give you permission to link to this site, we may cancel that permission at any time.

  1. No Technical Support.

We do not provide support to users of this site and we may not respond to user comments, but we appreciate you telling us about any errors or problems with the site.

Exception: If you are contributing materials to this site, we will provide reasonable technical support to help you submit those materials.

  1. Disclaimer

When you use this website, you do so at your own risk. PBN does not provide support to users of this site. This website is provided to you “as is, and as available.”

PBN does not guarantee or warrant this site or its content to be always available, correct, up-to-date, reliable, free of viruses or other defects, or that any problems or inaccuracies will be corrected.

PBN is not responsible for any loss, injury, claim, liability, or damage related to:

  • The hardware or software you use to access this site,
  • Your use of this site or its content for any purpose, including related to legal advice,
  • Any errors or omissions in the content at this site or other sites you are directed to from this site, or
  • The unavailability of this site or its content.

PBN makes no guarantee that any material on this site is

  • Suitable for any special purpose, or
  • Free of any claim of ownership by a third party.

 

PROVIDER DISCLAIMS ALL WARRANTIES OF ANY KIND, EITHER EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING WITHOUT LIMITATION THE WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, TITLE, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE, AND NON-INFRINGEMENT.

Legal Claims and Procedures

  1. Limited Liability.

 

BY YOUR USE OF THIS WEBSITE, YOU AGREE TO WAIVE ANY AND ALL CLAIMS RELATING TO THE USE OF THE WEBSITE OR ITS CONTENT, WHETHER SUCH CLAIMS ARE AGAINST PBN OR ANY OTHER PERSON WHO HAS SUPPLIED CONTENT TO THE WEBSITE. UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES AND UNDER NO LEGAL THEORY SHALL PBN OR ANY OTHER PARTY INVOLVED IN CREATING, PRODUCING, OR DELIVERING THE WEBSITE BE LIABLE TO YOU OR ANY OTHER PERSON FOR ANY SPECIAL, DIRECT, INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, PUNITIVE OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES OF ANY KIND WHATSOEVER (INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, ATTORNEYS' FEES) IN ANY WAY DUE TO, RESULTING FROM, OR ARISING IN CONNECTION FROM, YOUR ACCESS TO, USE OF, OR INABILITY TO USE, THIS WEBSITE. TO THE EXTENT THE FOREGOING LIMITATION OF LIABILITY IS PROHIBITED OR FAILS OF ITS ESSENTIAL PURPOSE, THE SOLE OBLIGATION OF PBN OR ANY OTHER PERSON WHO HAS SUPPLIED CONTENT TO THE WEBSITE TO YOU FOR DAMAGES SHALL BE LIMITED TO $100.00.

  1. Indemnification.

You agree to indemnify and hold harmless PBN and any third party providing content to this website from any and all claims, losses, expenses, damages and costs, including but not limited to reasonable attorneys' fees, arising as a result of your use of this website.

  1. Arbitration.

Any claims made related to this website must be settled in New York by binding arbitration. The arbitration will be conducted in accordance with the then applicable Commercial Arbitration Rules of the American Arbitration Association.  Each side will pay for its own costs, including attorney fees and costs.

If you go to arbitration, your claim will be decided by one arbitrator who is knowledgeable about computer and Internet law.

.

The arbitrator’s award will be binding and conclusive, and a judgment on any award may be entered in any court having jurisdiction. The arbitrator may not award punitive damages.

  1. Jurisdiction

These Terms of Use shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of New York, without giving any effect to any principles of conflicts of law. You agree that any action at law or in equity arising out of or relating to these terms shall be filed only in the state or federal courts located in New York and you hereby consent to the personal jurisdiction of such courts for the purpose of litigating any action.18.   Enforcing PBN's Rights.

When you use this website, you agree that any use that violates these Terms of Use may cause irreparable injury to PBN. If you do not follow these terms, you agree that PBN will:

  • Have the right to non-monetary relief, including a court order requiring you to stop or to perform any relief a court may impose, and
  • Not have to post any bond or other security.
  1. Third Party Rights.

PBN and any contributor or other third party submitting materials to this site have the right to enforce this agreement’s provisions for Disclaimer (13),  Liability (14), Arbitration (16), and Indemnification (15) against you on its own behalf.

  1. Severability.

If any part of these Terms of Use is found invalid or unenforceable, PBN and you agree that:

  • All other parts of this agreement are valid,
  • The intended meaning of the invalidated part will be replaced with language that closely matches PBN’s original intent, and
  • This agreement remains valid.

Even if a term of this agreement goes unenforced, PBN does not waive any part of this agreement, unless it does so in writing.

  1. Notification of Alleged Copyright Infringement.

PBN reserves the rights to remove any content that allegedly infringes a third party's copyright or otherwise violates the rights of any third party, or for any reason whatsoever, and to prohibit further use of this website by the individuals responsible for said infringement or violation. PBN also reserves the rights to pursue any party that submits an erroneous declaration.  If you believe that any content appears on this website in violation of your copyright or other proprietary rights, you should send a notice to PBN by first-class mail, return receipt requested, at the following address:  LawHelp Interactive Project Coordinator, c/o Pro Bono Net, Inc., 151 West 30th Street, 6th Floor, New York, NY 10001.  Such notice should include the following:

  1. Identification of the copyrighted work claimed to have been infringed.
  2. Identification of the material that is claimed to be infringing or to be the subject of infringing activity. Include information reasonably sufficient to permit PBN to locate the material.
  3. Information reasonably sufficient to permit PBN to contact you, such as an address, telephone number, and, if available, an e-mail address.
  4. The signature of the complaining party.
  5. Include the following statement: "I have a good faith belief that use of the copyrighted materials described above as allegedly infringing is not authorized by the copyright owner, its agent, or the law."
  6. Include the following statement: "I swear, under penalty of perjury, that the information in the notification is accurate and that I am the copyright owner or am authorized to act on behalf of the owner of an exclusive right that is allegedly infringed."
  7. Integration.

The version of these Terms of Use currently available at this website, incorporating by reference any supplemental rules or terms posted on this website, constitutes the complete statement of the agreement between you and PBN. That version supersedes and merges all prior proposals, understandings, and all other agreements, oral and written, between the parties relating to the subject matter of the agreement. 

  1. Modification to Terms of Use.

Updated versions of the Terms of Use will appear on this website and are effective immediately. Your continued use of this website after any update constitutes your agreement to be bound by the updated Terms of Use. You are responsible for regularly reviewing the Terms of Use.

Contributed Materials

  1. Ownership and Use of Contributed Materials.

When you contribute material to this website you license it to PBN for any non-profit purpose. That license gives PBN a lasting, worldwide, and royalty-free right to use your material and sublicense them to other contributors. PBN has the right to use any idea, knowledge, or technique in your material in any way. You cannot terminate that right. You also agree to give up the right to bring a claim against PBN for misuse or other violation of ownership rights in your materials. If you do not own the materials you contribute, you agree that the original owner gives us this same right. You keep any other rights you have in your material.

PBN may use and change your materials, in any way, at any time, in any medium, and in any part of the world. PBN also has the right to delete, edit, or refuse to post any material you submit without your permission for any reason.

Other users of this website may use your materials, link to your materials, and repost your materials on this website according to these Terms. They may develop new materials or templates based on your original materials. Other users do not have the right to copy, share, or change your original materials at this website without your permission.

You may contribute information to existing material on our site that you use to create new material that you may download, store, and print for your personal use. That new material is your work product, which you use at your own risk, and PBN is not liable for its use.

When you submit material to PBN, we will:

  • Identify you as the source of any material you submit,
  • Delete any of your materials at your request, and
  • Act as your agent if we make your materials available to other users of this.

If requested, PBN may sometimes be able to give you usage information about your contributed materials.

  1. Rules for Contributing Materials.

Contributors must:

Take reasonable steps to be sure your material will not harm the operation of our website. Your material must:

  • Be carefully read and tested,
  • Not contain a computer virus,
  • Not violate another’s intellectual property rights, and
  • Not be defamatory or violate any law or regulation that you or PBN must follow.

Provide quality control of your material. You must:

  • Monitor your material on an ongoing basis to make sure it is accurate, current, and free of technical problems,
  • Change or remove any material if you find any of these problems, and
  • Notify PBN about those problems.

Provide support for your submission. You must:

  • Give instructions for proper use of the material,
  • Let users know if they should talk to a lawyer when using your materials,
  • Provide links to other information when useful, and
  • Answer and respond to any complaints, or assign someone else to do so.

Products integrated with this website may be updated or changed according to the schedule posted at our Third Party Upgrade Policy page.

  1. No Soliciting.

Unless PBN has given you written permission to do so, your contributed materials must NOT:

  • Advertise, promote, or ask for money, goods, or services, or
  • Invite other users of this website to join any commercial online service or other organization. 

Additional Terms for Advocates and Court Employees

  1. Not-for-Profit Use by Advocates and Court Staff.

If not used for profit, this website may be used by Advocates and Court Staff.

  • Advocates means:
    • Lawyers and their staff giving not-for-profit or reduced-fee legal assistance to low-income people, or
    • Legal representatives acting on a not-for-profit basis on behalf of non-profit or charitable organizations
  • Court staff means court employees at courts that PBN has authorized to use this site who:
    • Help eligible users use this website, and
    • Do not provide legal help or act as lawyers for those users.
  1. Advocate Responsibilities.

When you use this website, you agree that you alone are responsible for:

  • Protecting your client’s and your interests,
  • Using your own professional judgment to apply any information from this site to the facts and circumstances of your case,
  • Verifying any information you get from this site, and
  • Personally assuring that your legal advice is based on accurate and complete information and research from any available sources.
  1. Ethics Notice for Advocates.

When you use this website, you must follow all applicable ethical rules and standards, including for:

  • Conflicts of interest,
  • Advertising,
  • Client solicitation,
  • Unauthorized practice of law,
  • Privileged and confidential information, and
  • Misrepresentations of fact.

PBN is not responsible for your compliance with these rules.

  1. Confidentiality and Attorney-Client Privilege.

When you use this website, you do not have an attorney-client relationship or other fiduciary relationship with PBN.

  • PBN cannot guarantee that your client’s or your information will be protected from your adversaries.

Caution! Before using email or this website to communicate confidential case or client information, consult your local ethics rules for communicating privileged information via email and Internet.

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