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Murer Professionalism Series: Public interest attorney speaks on legal aid in housing crisis

March 8, 2013
Daniel Lindsey

Daniel Lindsey

The NIU College of Law hosted its fifth lecture of the academic year Feb. 27 as part of the ongoing Murer Lecture Series on Professionalism.

Daniel Lindsey, supervising attorney for the Legal Assistance Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago (LAF), presented “Accessing Justice for Homeowners: A Lawyer’s Tale” to first-year law students.

Lindsey’s discussion centered on the history and development of the sub-prime mortgage crisis and the fraudulent activities that evolved as a result. The theme of his talk was access to justice to clients damaged by the crisis.

As supervising attorney at LAF, Lindsey’s primary responsibilities include defending low-income homeowners in the Chicago area against foreclosures and protecting their interests against illegal lending practices and fraud. He discussed examples from his own practice to show the importance of laws (and lawyer advocates) necessary to combat illegal lending, brokering, and banking.

Legal Assistance Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago logoIn his talk, Lindsey illustrated the problem of how low-income homeowners, in particular, are taken advantage of and do not have simple paths to legal recourse. Lindsey concluded by asking students to remember that access to justice is a cause to be advanced not just by legal aid lawyers, but by every lawyer.

Following the discussion, students went on to “Continue the Conversation” during dinner with Lindsey, NIU Law professors and alumni. Students were able to delve deeper into the complicated problems introduced in Lindsey’s presentation.

The NIU Law Murer Lecture on Professionalism is funded through the generosity of Cherilyn (’78) and Michael Murer, whose dedication to professionalism is infused throughout the series. Now in its second year, the program is intended to integrate professionalism into the law school curriculum, in response to the growing recognition that law students (and lawyers) need more guidance in professionalism to further the highest values of the profession.

The series consists of lectures featuring nationally recognized legal practitioners and scholars discussing cutting-edge issues.