A Charter Signatory to the Corporate Pro Bono Challenge℠, Computer Sciences Corporation (CSC) has provided its lawyers and paralegals a range of opportunities to assist underserved communities, including veterans, low-income seniors and individuals with permanent resident status. CSC General Counsel William L. Deckelman Jr. has overseen the company’s legal department since 2008 and has consistently supported CSC’s involvement with various pro bono projects. Sharing the recent work of the CSC pro bono program, Deckelman commented that these stories are just a few reminders of “the incredible good that can result from pro bono efforts.”
In 2010, a significant number of CSC’s United States based staff participated in CSC’s pro bono program. Attorneys and paralegals based at the company’s Falls Church, Va., headquarters participated in the Wills on Wheels project, sponsored by the Northern Virginia Pro Bono Law Center. Volunteers visited sites throughout the community to draft end-of-life and planning documents such as wills, health care directives, and powers of attorney for low-income seniors.
The Northern Virginia Pro Bono Law Center trained CSC volunteers on the relevant legal issues. The CSC legal team then staffed a number of clinics at various sites in the Northern Virginia community. The Center identified clinic sites based on proximity to those in need. At each of the clinics, CSC’s volunteers conducted an initial intake, drafted end-of-life and planning documents, and returned for a second visit to present and explain the documents to the clients for their signature.
CSC also joined the ranks of participating attorney groups in the series of ongoing “Citizenship Day” events sponsored by the Washington, D.C., chapter of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA). With training from AILA, seven of CSC’s attorneys staffed a regional legal clinic where they helped clients with permanent resident status apply to become naturalized U.S. citizens.
CSC lawyers also assisted disabled veterans through the U.S. Veterans Benefits Administration’s “When Duty Calls” program, which provides pro bono representation to veterans filing disability claims. Through this program, CSC volunteers were able to engage in longer term pro bono representation on behalf of the clients. One client showed his appreciation by hand delivering a thank you note to CSC. The lawyer who “represented me over the last year and a half in a professional manner . . . took any action necessary to deal with the task at hand. He represent[ed] [me] to the highest level of excellence and is an asset to the company. Thanks… for serving a Vet in a time of need.”