The A2J office will be temporarily closed for a 2-week period beginning Friday, May 24, 2024. The office will reopen on Monday, June 10. 2024. Applications for legal assistance through Access to Justice will not be accepted during the office closure period.
The recently released Statewide Legal Needs Assessment demonstrates great legal need and few legal resources. ERLS, DPLS, and A2J receive about three hundred and fifty applications for assistance through sdlawhelp.org every month. While we are one state, challenges and resources vary by community and we need to respond accordingly. We’re excited to take action on the recommendations included in the report. Please reach out with questions, suggestions, or a desire to collaborate to respond to the needs outlined in the report. You can read the report and recommendations here.

A collaborative effort to promote equal justice by providing legal assistance, education and resources to qualifying individuals across South Dakota.

East River Legal Services

East River Legal Services

East River Legal Services (ERLS) has two offices in Eastern South Dakota (Aberdeen and Sioux Falls). ERLS represents low-income South Dakotans in the areas of family law, eviction defense, public benefits, and consumer protection. Additionally, ERLS provides information and brief services on the topic of housing statewide. ERLS has a staff of 20 which includes attorneys, paralegals, and client advocates. Funding for ERLS comes from the Legal Services Corporation (LSC), Victims of Crime Act (VOCA), the Older Americans Act, the South Dakota Housing Development Authority, and the South Dakota Commission on Equal Access to the Courts.  

Dakota Plains Legal Services

Dakota Plains Legal Services

Dakota Plains Legal Services (DPLS) has seven offices across South Dakota (Eagle Butte, Fort Thompson, Mission, Pine Ridge, Sioux Falls, Sisseton, Ft. Yates, and Rapid City). DPLS represents low-income and elderly clients in western South Dakota, as well as the Native American population statewide. DPLS’ 12 attorneys and 10 paralegals work in both state and tribal courts. DPLS focuses on family law, housing, and Indian Law. Funding for DPLS comes primarily from the Legal Services Corporation (LSC), with additional funding from the Older Americans Act, United Way of the Black Hills, U.S. Department of Justice, Pennington County for appointed criminal representation, and the South Dakota Commission on Equal Access to the Courts. 

Access to Justice

Access to Justice  

Access to Justice, Inc. (A2J) is a statewide legal aid program with an office in Pierre, S.D. The A2J program matches accepted cases with licensed South Dakota attorneys that volunteer through the A2J program. The A2J program offers both pro bono and reduced-rate legal assistance opportunities. The A2J program does not have staff attorneys and does not provide legal advice or answer legal questions over the phone. Individuals seeking legal assistance through A2J will need to complete an application to apply for legal assistance.  Access to Justice is funded through generous grants made by the State Bar of South Dakota, the South Dakota Bar Foundation, and the South Dakota Commission on Equal Access to the Courts.