Tobias Simon (1929-1982) was a civil rights lawyer, in Miami, Florida, USA, perhaps best known for his work in the 1960s defending the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and other activists. Simon provided legal counsel regarding marches in Florida and throughout the Deep South. Simon also was a leader of Florida opposition to the death penalty in the 1960s and 1970s and was particularly concerned about the discriminatory imposition of the death penalty on African-Americans, as well as the Florida case against loyalty oaths, Cramp v. Board of Public Instruction , which was argued before the Supreme Court of the United States in 1961. Simon offered to represent Clarence Gideon after his case was turned back to the lower court after Gideon v. Wainwright , but was rejected.
Simon was a native of Montreal, a graduate of Harvard Law School, began his law career in New York City, and moved to Miami. He died of cancer in February 1982, at the age of 52.
The Tobias Simon Pro Bono Service Award, created in 1982, is Florida's highest statewide pro bono award. It is presented annually by the chief justice to a private lawyer for voluntary, free legal services to the poor. It is intended to encourage extraordinary contributions by recognizing the Florida attorney who best exemplifies the highest ideals of the profession by making legal services available to people who otherwise could not afford them, and to focus public awareness on the substantial voluntary services rendered by Florida lawyers in this area. The Tobias Simon Pro Bono Service Award is believed to be the first of its kind in the country conferring recognition by the state's highest court.
Gideon v. Wainwright, 372 U.S. 335 (1963), was a landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision in which the Court ruled that the Sixth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution requires U.S. states to provide attorneys to criminal defendants who are unable to afford their own. The case extended the right to counsel, which had been found under the Fifth and Sixth Amendments to impose requirements on the federal government, by imposing those requirements upon the states as well.
Pro bono publico, usually shortened to pro bono, is a Latin phrase for professional work undertaken voluntarily and without payment. The term typically refers to provision of legal services by legal professionals for people who are unable to afford them.
A public defender is a lawyer appointed to represent people who otherwise cannot reasonably afford to hire a lawyer to defend themselves in a trial. Several countries provide people with public defenders, including the UK, Hungary and Singapore, and some states of Australia. Brazil is the only country in which an office of government-paid lawyers with the specific purpose of providing full legal assistance and representation to the needy free of charge is established in the constitution. The Sixth Amendment of the US Constitution has been interpreted to require the US government to provide free legal counsel to indigent defendants in criminal cases, and public defenders in the United States are full-time lawyers employed by or under contract with the state or federal governments.
Clarence Earl Gideon was a poor drifter accused in a Florida state court of felony theft. While in prison, he appealed his case to the US Supreme Court, resulting in the landmark 1963 decision Gideon v. Wainwright holding that a criminal defendant who cannot afford to hire a lawyer must be provided one at no cost.
Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP is an American multinational law firm. A white-shoe firm, Arnold & Porter is among the largest law firms in the world, by both revenue and by its number of lawyers.
Jenner & Block is an American law firm with offices in Chicago, London, Los Angeles, New York City, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C. The firm is active in corporate litigation, business transactions, the public sector, and other legal fields. It has litigated several prominent cases before the United States Supreme Court. As of 2014, it was the 103rd-largest law firm in the US, based on The American Lawyer's annual ranking of firms by headcount.
In criminal law, the right to counsel means a defendant has a legal right to have the assistance of counsel and, if the defendant cannot afford a lawyer, requires that the government appoint one or pay the defendant's legal expenses. The right to counsel is generally regarded as a constituent of the right to a fair trial. Historically, however, not all countries have always recognized the right to counsel. The right is often included in national constitutions. Of the 194 constitutions currently in force, 153 have language to this effect.
Richard Fred Lewis was appointed to the Supreme Court of Florida on December 7, 1998.
Bruce J. Winick was the Silvers-Rubenstein Distinguished Professor of Law and Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Florida, where he had taught since 1974. He was an internationally known scholar and lecturer in mental health law and in law and psychology. The co-founder of the school of social enquiry known as therapeutic jurisprudence, Winick is Director of the University of Miami School of Law’s recently established Therapeutic Jurisprudence Center. Winick also had a long career as a civil rights lawyer, and had served as an expert witness on a variety of law-related issues. Winick died in 2010 after a long battle with cancer.
The Florida Justice Institute (FJI) is a nonprofit public interest law firm in Miami, Florida. The firm is headquartered at 100 SE 2nd St in the Miami Tower in Downtown Miami. It was established in 1978 by Randall C. Berg Jr. The institute has been dedicated to improving conditions in Florida's prison system and has initiated numerous class action lawsuits toward this end. Berg is past president of the Florida ACLU. Berg also served on Governor Lawton Chiles' Transition Criminal Justice Task Force and is the past Chairman of the Corrections Committee.
Cuban American Bar Association (CABA) was established in Miami in 1974 by a group of 20 or so Cuban attorneys adapting in a different culture. CABA is a non-profit voluntary bar association in the State of Florida. CABA's members include judges, lawyers and law students of Cuban, Cuban-American descent, as well as those who are not of Cuban descent, but are interested in issues affecting the Cuban community.
Ellis S. Rubin was an American attorney who gained national fame for handling a variety of highly publicized cases in a legal career that spanned 53 years. He was famous for his innovative defenses and his propensity for handling lost causes. Rubin won the first case in Florida using the “battered woman” defense. He also worked to free a man, James Joseph Richardson, who had been wrongly imprisoned for 21 years for fatally poisoning his seven children, and created the nymphomania defense in a case involving prostitution.
Ira J. Kurzban is an American civil rights and immigration lawyer. He is the author of Kurzban's Immigration Law Sourcebook, published by the American Immigration Council. Kurzban received widespread media coverage during the 1980s for his representation of Haitian immigrants in Miami, and, in the 1990s and more recently, for his representation of the Haitian government and its two-time president, Jean-Bertrand Aristide.
Pro se legal representation comes from Latin pro se, meaning "for oneself" or "on behalf of themselves" which, in modern law, means to argue on one's own behalf in a legal proceeding, as a defendant or plaintiff in civil cases, or a defendant in criminal cases, rather than have representation from counsel or an attorney.
Howard W. Dixon was a civil rights attorney in Miami between 1955 and 1997. During that time, he was considered an activist for the rights of poor people and ethnic and racial minorities. He served as General Counsel for the NAACP in the '50s, was a founding Board Member of the Florida Civil Liberties Union. He was the founding executive director of Legal Service of Greater Miami, a program that grew out of President Lyndon Johnson's 1964 War on Poverty. He served as Executive Director from 1966 to 1977. After his retirement as a General Master for the Florida Court System in 1987, he served as a full-time volunteer for the Legal Aid Society of Greater Miami, earning him the John Minor Wisdom Public Service and Professionalism Award for Pro Bono Service by the American Bar Association in 1995.
Covington & Burling LLP is an American multinational law firm. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., the firm advises clients on transactional, litigation, regulatory, and public policy matters. In 2021, Vault.com ranked Covington & Burling as the #1 law firm in Washington, D.C. The firm has additional offices in Beijing, Brussels, Frankfurt, Dubai, Johannesburg, London, Los Angeles, New York, Palo Alto, San Francisco, Seoul, and Shanghai.
Legal aid in the United States is the provision of assistance to people who are unable to afford legal representation and access to the court system in the United States. In the US, legal aid provisions are different for criminal law and civil law. Criminal legal aid with legal representation is guaranteed to defendants under criminal prosecution who cannot afford to hire an attorney. Civil legal aid is not guaranteed under federal law, but is provided by a variety of public interest law firms and community legal clinics for free or at reduced cost. Other forms of civil legal aid are available through federally-funded legal services, pro bono lawyers, and private volunteers.
The New York County Lawyers Association (NYCLA) is a bar association located in New York City.
Public interest law refers to legal practices undertaken to help poor, marginalized, or under-represented people, or to effect change in social policies in the public interest, on 'not for profit' terms, often in the fields of civil rights, civil liberties, religious liberty, human rights, women's rights, consumer rights, environmental protection, and so on.
Eugene Singarajah Thuraisingam is an international arbitration and commercial litigation lawyer from Singapore. He is the founder of the law firm Eugene Thuraisingam LLP, a law firm that specialises in international arbitration and criminal and commercial litigation. He is also known for his advocacy of human rights and for being a staunch opponent and outspoken critic of the death penalty in Singapore. In relation to his domestic practice as a criminal lawyer in Singapore, Thuraisingam was also known for defending many alleged suspects in high profile criminal trials, including those who are dissidents and critics of the government of Singapore. For his legal service for many defendants in the court of Singapore, Doyles Guide has named him as a leading criminal defence lawyer in Singapore in 2020.