The Beulah Fund

The Beulah Fund focuses on the family law needs of clients who are living at or below 150% of poverty and are either over the age of fifty-five with no minor dependents or who are disabled, and do not qualify for free services under any other LevittQuinn program. Our goal in implementing this project is to provide free family law help to seniors and to adults with intellectual and mental health disabilities who would not otherwise get legal aid. These two populations have their own specific concerns, but both generally have trouble finding affordable family law help and accessing services due to capacity and/or mobility issues. Both groups also tend to rely on caregivers, family members, or case managers for help accessing services. The Beulah Fund aims to provide an accessible avenue for those who are especially vulnerable to receive the legal help they need to maintain and increase stability for themselves and household family members. Those Beulah Fund clients 55 and older tend to be female and need help ending a marriage and accessing the spousal support and property division to which they are legally entitled, including the family home and retirement account interests. Seniors experience self-advocacy struggles in the courtroom, and often what is at stake for them is financial. Getting a divorce and fair financial orders can mean the difference between a decent standard of living and abject poverty.  Those Beulah Fund clients with intellectual, mental, or physical disabilities tend to be parents (often Regional Center clients), who are younger and typically seek help establishing or maintaining relationships with their minor children. Effective advocacy is necessary to help a court see past a client’s disability to assess their actual capacity to maintain appropriate and healthy relationships that are in the best interest of their kids.