Lending legal aid after the Valley Fire devastation

Amy Yarbrough
November 1, 2015


In early October, lawyers from Grass Valley-based Northern California Lawyer Access’ legal incubator program, joined by an attorney from Lake County Court’s legal self-help center, met with Valley Fire victims to answer questions and provide advice.

Although many victims had questions about insurance and loss of information, like IDs, most of the victims of the fire sought landlord-tenant advice.

“A lot of people were wondering about their rights, for the time they were displaced, if they owed rent,” said James V.M. Anderson, one of the volunteers from the incubator program.

Anderson estimates he spoke with about a dozen people. Some were curious what their next steps should be now that that their homes were destroyed. Others, who didn’t lose homes, worried their rent would go up with less housing available and wondered if they owed rent for the period they were displaced.

“The question I got a lot was, ‘how do I have this conversation with my landlord?’” he said.

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