What Does “Pro Bono” Mean in the Legal World?

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Imoforpcs.com – Have you ever heard the term “pro bono” used in the legal world? It’s a term that is often used to describe legal work that is done for free, but there is actually a specific term that lawyers use to refer to this type of work. So, what is the lawyer word for free?

The Lawyer’s Term for Free: Pro Bono

The Lawyer's Term for Free: Pro Bono


Lawyers are often associated with high fees and expensive hourly rates. However, not all legal services come with a price tag. In fact, lawyers are expected to provide free legal services to those who cannot afford it. This is known as pro bono work.

What is Pro Bono?

Pro bono is a Latin term that means “for the public good.” In the legal world, pro bono work refers to legal services that are provided free of charge to individuals and organizations who cannot afford to pay for them.

Why Do Lawyers Do Pro Bono Work?

There are several reasons why lawyers choose to take on pro bono cases:

  • Access to Justice: Pro bono work ensures that everyone has access to legal representation, regardless of their financial situation.
  • Professional Development: Pro bono work allows lawyers to gain experience in areas of law they may not typically encounter in their paid work.
  • Social Responsibility: Many lawyers feel a sense of social responsibility to give back to their community by providing free legal services.

Who Benefits from Pro Bono Work?

Pro bono work benefits a wide range of individuals and organizations, including:

  • Low-Income Individuals: Pro bono work can help low-income individuals with legal issues related to housing, employment, and family law.
  • Non-Profit Organizations: Pro bono work can provide non-profit organizations with legal assistance with matters such as incorporation, tax-exemption status, and contracts.
  • Public Interest Groups: Pro bono work can support public interest groups in their efforts to advance social justice and civil rights causes.

How Much Pro Bono Work Do Lawyers Do?

The amount of pro bono work that lawyers do varies widely. Some lawyers may only take on one or two pro bono cases per year, while others may devote a significant portion of their practice to pro bono work.


Pro bono work is an essential part of the legal profession. It ensures that everyone has access to legal representation, regardless of their financial situation. Lawyers who choose to do pro bono work can make a significant impact in their community and contribute to the public good.

6 things to know about Pro Bono Video

Tips and Tricks regarding What is the Lawyer Word for Free?

Understanding Legal Terminologies

Legal terminologies can be quite perplexing and complex. It is important to understand the meaning of the terms and phrases used in legal vocabulary. One such term is pro bono. This term is often used in legal circles to refer to legal services provided for free or at a reduced fee. It is important to understand that pro bono is not the only word that is used for providing free legal services. Other phrases that can be used include ‘free legal services’ or ‘no-cost legal assistance.’

Seeking Legal Assistance

If you are in need of legal assistance, it is important to seek out a lawyer who is willing to provide pro bono services or free legal aid. There are several ways to find such lawyers. One way is to check with your local bar association. They keep records of lawyers who provide pro bono or free legal aid. You can also check online legal directories or search engines to find lawyers who offer free legal services in your area.

Qualifying for Pro Bono Legal Assistance

Not everyone qualifies for pro bono legal assistance. Most lawyers will only provide such services to individuals or organizations that meet certain criteria. This may include individuals or families with low income, victims of domestic violence or abuse, and other vulnerable groups. It is important to check with the lawyer or legal service provider to find out if you qualify for pro bono legal assistance.

Volunteering for Pro Bono Legal Work

If you are a lawyer or law student, volunteering for pro bono legal work can be a great way to give back to society. It can also provide you with valuable experience and help you develop new skills. There are several organizations that provide pro bono legal services and are always in need of volunteers. You can check with your local bar association or legal aid service provider to find out about such opportunities.


In conclusion, understanding legal terminologies, seeking legal assistance, qualifying for pro bono legal assistance, and volunteering for pro bono legal work are some of the tips and tricks that can help you navigate the world of free legal services. Whether you are in need of legal assistance or looking to give back to society, there are several ways to get involved and make a difference.

What is the Legal Term for Free?

Understanding the Legal Definition of Free

When it comes to the law, the term “free” can have different meanings depending on the context. In general, “free” refers to something that is given without cost or obligation. However, when it comes to legal matters, the definition of “free” can be more complex and nuanced.

The Role of Consideration in Defining Free

One important factor in determining whether something is truly “free” in a legal sense is the concept of consideration. Consideration refers to something of value that is exchanged between two parties in a contract or agreement. In order for a contract to be binding, both parties must receive some form of consideration. This means that if something is given away for free without any accompanying obligation or exchange of value, it may not be considered legally “free.”

The Use of “Gratis” in Legal Terminology

In legal contexts, the term “gratis” is often used to denote something that is given freely without any obligation or compensation. For example, a company may offer a “gratis” product sample to potential customers. This indicates that the sample is being given away without any expectation of payment or obligation to purchase.

Alternatives to the Term “Free”

Because of the complex legal implications of the term “free,” lawyers and legal professionals may choose to use alternative language to describe the same concept. For example, instead of saying that something is “free,” they may use phrases like “complimentary,” “at no charge,” or “without obligation.”


While the term “free” may seem simple on the surface, its legal implications require a deeper understanding of the concept of consideration and the use of alternative language. By understanding the legal definition of “free,” individuals and businesses can navigate contracts and agreements with greater clarity and confidence.

The Legal Term for Free: Frequently Asked Questions

What is the legal term for free?

The legal term for free is “pro bono.” It is a Latin phrase that means “for the public good.” Lawyers who offer their services for free are doing so in the interest of helping the community and ensuring that everyone has access to legal representation, regardless of their financial situation.

Why do lawyers offer pro bono services?

Lawyers offer pro bono services for a variety of reasons. Some feel a sense of duty to help those who cannot a
fford legal representation. Others see it as a way to give back to their community. Additionally, pro bono work can help lawyers build their reputation and gain experience in new areas of law.

Who is eligible for pro bono services?

Pro bono services are typically available to individuals and organizations who cannot afford to pay for legal representation. Lawyers may also offer pro bono services to causes they support, such as civil rights or environmental protection.

How can someone find a lawyer who offers pro bono services?

There are several resources available for individuals seeking pro bono legal help. Many state and local bar associations have pro bono programs that can connect individuals with lawyers who are willing to offer their services for free. Additionally, legal aid organizations and nonprofits may offer pro bono services in specific areas of law.

Is pro bono work mandatory for lawyers?

Pro bono work is not mandatory for lawyers, but many states have implemented voluntary pro bono requirements as part of their bar admission process. Some law firms also encourage their lawyers to participate in pro bono work as part of their professional development.

What are the benefits of offering pro bono services?

Offering pro bono services can provide several benefits for lawyers. It can help them build their reputation and gain valuable experience in new areas of law. Additionally, it can provide a sense of fulfillment and satisfaction in helping those who cannot afford legal representation.

Can pro bono work count towards billable hours?

Some law firms allow pro bono work to count towards a lawyer’s billable hours. However, this varies by firm and by jurisdiction. It is important for lawyers to check with their firm and state bar association to determine the policies and guidelines for pro bono work.