If you are a business who is a commercial tenant in the Greater Bay Area, and have received a three-day notice or summons and complaint in an unlawful detainer eviction lawsuit, please read up on your legal rights as a commercial tenant facing eviction at this link, with some suggestions of possible resources: https://lccrsf.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/Know-Your-Rights-Printout.docx 

If you have a pressing legal need besides an impending commercial eviction lawsuit, and do not want to wait for our LSE team to review your application, please look up your local bar association’s attorney referral program to find a sliding scale attorney.  

  • The Alameda County Bar Association is providing limited virtual pro bono services. Please call the Alameda County Bar Association intake line for screening: (510) 302-2222 option #4 or submit an online request here
  • You may be able to receive representation or referrals through the San Francisco Lawyer Referral Service, you can call (415) 989-1616 (hours 11:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. PST) or fill out their online request form to receive assistance here
  • The Contra Costa County Bar Association Find a Lawyer service can be reached via phone at (925) 825-5700 or by completing their online form here
  • The Santa Clara County Bar Association Lawyer Referral Service can be reached by calling (669) 302-7803 or online here
  • For resident of San Mateo, the San Mateo County Bar Association’s Lawyer Referral Service Program is available by calling (650) 369-4149. 

Other resources to explore for free or low-cost legal assistance: 

  • Berkeley Law’s New Business Community Law Clinic offers free legal office hours for eligible entrepreneurs in the East Bay throughout the month. You can see all the dates and locations and register for an appointment here to meet with an attorney. 
  • If you are sued as an Alameda County resident, Alameda County Superior Court Self-Help Center offers phone and video consultations as well as a live chat feature to answer questions about your case: Visit their website or call 510-272-1393 for more info. 
  • Another legal services organization, Elevate Community Center, provides free legal services to eligible clients for a variety of legal issues. Their application form can be accessed by filling out this form here
  • You may also receive low-cost representation through the Bay Area Legal Incubator. Visit this link to request legal assistance. 

If you are a commercial tenant in the Bay Area who needs help negotiating your lease, creating a rent repayment plan, or whose landlord is threatening you with an eviction or breach of contract case, we can help. We offer a variety of services including webinars that outline your moratorium protections and legal defenses, commercial lease clinics, attorney matching, and legal information. If you have any questions specific to commercial lease matters, please email lse@lccrsf.org

Resources for San Francisco and Oakland-Based Small Businesses and Nonprofits

San Francisco

Oakland

How to Apply for Free Legal Services

Legal Services for Entrepreneurs (LSE) provides free legal services to low-income individuals who want to start or develop businesses; businesses committed to investing in economically distressed communities, including hiring people with arrest and conviction records; and mom and pop shops located in areas where gentrification is a force for displacement.

Need business law advice? We can help! 

We serve Bay Area clients that are: 

  • Low-income individuals 
  • Located in low-income communities; and/or 
  • Located in communities of color and have a commitment to hiring from the community 


We provide free legal consultations on

  • Entity formation
  • Terms of a commercial lease 
  • Business contracts 
  • Employment law 
  • Intellectual property 
  • Other business concerns 

Please note: We do not provide legal consultation on tax, litigation, or bankruptcy concerns. 

You’ll need to complete an online application form. Once the application form is submitted, LCCRSF staff will contact you to schedule a 30-minute call to listen to your situation and match you with the right attorney and resources. 

LSE Pro-Bono/Free Attorney Application

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