Pro Bono Program Gets Drivers Legally Back on Road
More than 200 people lined up inside Franklin County Municipal Court looking for a way to be lawfully behind the wheel after lengthy, sometimes years-long, entanglements. They were attempting to reinstate their licenses at a pilot program hosted by the court and several legal groups working pro bono.
“The procedure to get them [drivers’ licenses] reinstated is very, very complicated, and there are a number of steps they have to go through, and there are several different entities, [where] both the BMV and the court system may be involved in their license suspension,” said Sally Bloomfield, a pro bono attorney, who’s volunteered her legal services for decades.
The Franklin County Municipal Court Clerk’s Office, the Ohio Legal Assistance Foundation (OLAF), the Legal Aid Society of Columbus, and Ohio State Bar Association coordinated the event, which was set up with multiple stations among the facilitators to identify and fix issues that prevent people from having their licenses reinstated. Representatives from the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles and Franklin County Job and Family Services, bankruptcy advisers, and an auto insurance company were among the others also on hand as part of a “one-stop shop.”