A group of lawyers from King & Spalding are giving back to part of he Austin community by volunteering to care for the legal needs of people whose homes were damaged by extensive flooding on Halloween.
“We are always looking for pro bono projects that can have the most beneficial impact on the community. We were moved by the media reports of the damages caused by the floods at the end of October. Particularly in the Dove Springs community, which is a lower-income community,” said King & Spalding partner Mike Biles of Austin (pictured).
Biles, who directs his office’s pro bono efforts, said he learned through Volunteer Legal Services of Central Texas that Austinites affected by the flood had legal needs. Now, five or six attorneys from the firm have teamed up to handle two active cases.
“We expect more to come,” Biles said.
In one case, he said that a family’s rental home was condemned, yet the California-based landlord refuses to allow the family out of their lease. The firm will try negotiating first, but it will file suit if necessary, Biles noted. In the other case, an elderly woman’s home was condemned and the home-security alarm company is trying to make her pay an $800 cancellation fee.
He added that if other lawyers are interested in helping, they could volunteer through Volunteer Legal Services of Central Texas.
Abby Anna Batko-Taylor, an attorney with the nonprofit, didn’t return a telephone call seeking comment.