December 4, 2019
The Post and Courier
Charleston has the nation's highest eviction rate in the country, according to a recent study from Princeton University. That's why several legal groups, providers, and partners came together to start the first Housing Court in the state. Charleston associate Olesya Bracey wrote of her experiences participating in its first session for the Post and Courier.
"I believe this will be a successful program that will help many tenants keep their homes and landlords keep their tenants," Bracey says. Based on the first session, she notes that many evictions seem to arise from a lack of communication between the landlord and the tenant — something which she thinks pro bono attorneys can help mend while getting courtroom experience in the process.
"Young attorneys and/or those with limited courtroom experience, like me, would also benefit from participating in this project, in addition to having a chance to help people facing eviction navigate this difficult and often scary situation," she writes.
Charleston partner Merritt Abney also participated in the housing court. Community contributors to the pilot court include South Carolina Legal Services, One80 Place Legal Services, Charleston Legal Access, Charleston Pro Bono Legal Services, Charleston County Magistrate Courts, Charleston School of Law, Trident Urban League, 2-1-1 Hotline, the city of Charleston, and Nelson Mullins.
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