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Need legal help with a family matter, but can't afford an attorney?

Free and low-cost legal resources are available in Chicago. We find you the best legal help for your needs – for free!

We can find you legal help with the following issues:

Child Support

Starting a child support case, changing a child support order, enforcing a child support order, college expenses


Establishing legal parentage, declaring parent-child relationships non-existent, challenging VAPs and Denials

Custody & Visitation 

Starting a custody or visitation case, changing a parenting plan, visitation for non-parents

Divorce & Separation

Starting a divorce or separation case, responding to a divorce petition, changing a settlement agreement, annulments


Our tools make it quick & easy for you to find affordable legal help

Select the Illinois county you live in
Answer a few short questions about your legal situation
Get referrals to free and low-cost legal help in Chicago!

Select the Illinois county you currently live in

Answer a few questions about your legal problem

Get referrals to free and low-cost legal resources!

Free, Secure, Reliable Referrals

SAEF is a nonprofit funded by generous donors, including the University of Chicago and Duke Center on Law & Technology. We'll never ask you to pay for any of our services.

We'll never share your data with third-parties without permission. All of our services can be used without sharing any personally-identifiable information. Learn more in our Privacy Policy

We work closely with experienced Chicago family law attorneys & our partners to make sure the referrals we provide are accurate and up-to-date.

Sorry! Work in Progress

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We're currently updating our data for the divorce and separation surveys, and are working to make them available to you as soon as we can. 

We sincerely appreciate your patience and apologize for the inconvenience.

What do we mean by "Free & Low-Cost Legal Help?"

Legal Aid & Pro Bono

There are a number of organizations in Chicago that receive funding from the government to provide free legal services to those that quality. Eligible applicants typically live in a household between 150% and 300% of the Federal Poverty Line.

In most cases, organizations that offer full representation have stricter eligibility standards than those offering legal advice only, which tend to be much looser.

"Low-Bono" Legal Service Providers

Many private firms & nonprofits offer alternative billing arrangements – making their legal services much cheaper than the average family law attorney.

In general, we define “low-cost” fees as at least 40% below market rate. Alternative billing arrangements commonly take the form of sliding-scale fees (payments based on income), flat-fees (one-time payment), or a limited-scope arrangement (pay only for specific tasks).

Other Resources

At times, we may refer you to an organization that doesn’t offer legal services.

Instead, they may provide services for administrative cases, or offer more specialized legal information products. We only work with companies that meet our low-cost standard and offer demonstrated legal solutions.