Justice in Action: LAF
Melvin, a senior living on Social Security, and Ronnie, who has been disabled since birth with Down’s Syndrome, are brothers. Melvin moved into the family home to care for Ronnie when their mother, Vivian, died. Before she passed, Vivian took out a reverse mortgage which came due upon her death. The house went into foreclosure and the bank ignored Melvin’s numerous attempts to resolve the matter. IEJF grantee LAF (formerly the Legal Assistance Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago) was able to negotiate with the lender to reduce the amount of the loan to match the appraisal value of the home. An out-of-state brother took out a second mortgage on his house to raise the needed funds to ensure a safe home for Melvin and Ronnie. LAF and a little brotherly love saved the day!
LAF makes equal justice a reality for over 40,000 vulnerable community members a year. Founded in 1972, LAF is the largest provider of free, comprehensive civil legal assistance in Cook County. The Illinois Equal Justice Foundation (IEJF) has proudly supported LAF’s work since its first grant round in 2001. Click to learn more about the amazing work of LAF’s staff and volunteer attorneys.
This article was reprinted and edited with permission from LAF. The story originally ran in their 2013 Annual Report.