race, poverty, justice, justice gap


Socio-legal scholarship examining issues of access to justice is currently experiencing a renaissance. Renewed inquiry into this field is urgently needed. Studies confirm that only 20 percent of the legal needs of low- income communities are met and that the vast majority of unrepresented litigants are low income, creating what some call a “justice gap” that has become even more urgent in recent years. State tribunals that deal with high-stakes issues particularly relevant to low-income residents, such as family courts and housing courts, are seeing an increasing number of litigants, the majority of whom are unrepresented.