Since its inception in 1911, Legal Aid Bureau has provided free civil legal assistance to low-income people in need throughout Maryland. Our clients base includes children, the disabled, the elderly, migrant and farm workers, and those whose basic necessities, including housing, custodial relationships and health, are at risk. Unlike the criminal defense area, there is no right to counsel in a civil case. Not limiting our services to litigation, Legal Aid staff engages in community outreach and mentoring, provides guidance to clients about their legal rights, educates other legal providers and client groups, policy education and, where the problems of individuals are common to many, addressing systematic causes of their problems. If Legal Aid were not available, individuals and families would be without legal advice and representation and thereby denied effective access to our legal system. Our work on their behalf advances their ability to lead productive and responsible lives.