December 09, 2021
December 09, 2021
A key tenet of Gilbert’s philosophy is to give back to our communities. Lawyers and other professionals at Gilbert LLP engage in public service work, including a substantial pro bono legal practice. That practice has never been more essential.
The extraordinary events of the last 22 months highlight how certain populations—immigrants, racial and ethnic minorities, and the indigent, among others—remain keenly underserved and in increasingly dire need of help, empathy, and representation from those who are more fortunate.
Against this backdrop, Gilbert’s attorneys and staff are particularly grateful to our clients for trusting us in 2021 with their most serious legal problems. We are privileged to provide our services pro bono, leveling the playing field for clients who do not have the resources to represent themselves against much more powerful institutions.
Over the last two years, the firm has secured repeated victories for our client in a hotly-contested immigration dispute. In June 2020, Gilbert LLP successfully secured an order granting “withholding of removal” for our client, so he can stay in the United States instead of being deported to Guatemala. After an appeal and a remand sought by the U.S. government, Gilbert LLP secured another victory in February 2021, with the judge issuing a new ruling that again affirmed our client’s entitlement to withholding of removal, allowing him to stay in the United States. We continue to represent this client in his ongoing efforts to remain in the country where he has now lived for nearly six years.
In another case, Gilbert LLP—after over five years of litigation—secured in 2021 a divorce and custody award for a mother who for years was abused by her husband in Guatemala. In the same proceeding, the court issued findings of fact necessary for our client’s minor son to obtain “special immigrant juvenile status” in immigration proceedings, allowing him to stay with his mother in the United States rather than being forced to return to his abusive father.
Gilbert LLP is pleased to be part of “Justice Lab,” a project of the ACLU of Louisiana that provides legal representation to Louisiana residents who have been victims of police misconduct and abuse. The project comprises a coalition of the nation’s top litigation law firms and law school appellate clinics. Gilbert has been working with the ACLU of Louisiana to assess victims’ cases, hear their stories, and provide legal support to the Justice Lab effort.
REPRESENTING THE DISADVANTAGED
This year, Gilbert LLP successfully defended our client in hard-fought auto subrogation litigation against a major insurance company in D.C. Superior Court. In 2019, the insurance company alleged that our client’s car was involved in an accident in a fast-food restaurant’s drive-through line. The insurance company sought $13,000 from our client, despite the absence of video, police reports, or any other evidence of the supposed accident. After a series of depositions and court hearings, the insurance company dropped its case against our client.
Also this year, Gilbert LLP successfully represented a young mother of three children (all under the age of 7) in her fiercely contested housing conditions suit against her landlord in D.C. Superior Court. Our client’s apartment was plagued with (among other things) non-functioning air conditioning, mold and mildew throughout the unit, and a rodent infestation. Gilbert attorneys persuaded the court to order multiple inspections of our client’s home and issue orders requiring prompt remedial action by the landlord. As a result of these orders, all the necessary repairs to our client’s home have now been completed.
Gilbert LLP looks forward to continuing to build on its founding promise of doing good while doing well as we enter 2022.