Client Stories

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Link Card Follies

By Justin Hayford | November 5, 2009

The best thing about the Illinois Department of Human Services is its highly developed sense of farce. Consider Jeff’s story. Recently Jeff went to his local IDHS office and applied for Food Stamps (also known as a Link Card … also known as SNAP … and no, that’s not really the farcical part of our…

Our New Hero

By Justin Hayford | September 8, 2009

So we’re all swooning over our new legal idol, attorney Seth M. Lloyd, with the law firm Dykema Gossett PLLC. He took on one heck of a confused, complicated, messy insurance case for a client with end-stage cancer and fixed everything — in about a week. And he did all the work for free! Back…

Client focus: Sheila

By Justin Hayford | August 13, 2009

We had a little flashback to 1983 this week, when a client called with a story that seemed to come straight from those days of ignorance and intolerance. Sheila works transporting passengers who need assistance, typically the elderly and disabled. When she started the job about six months ago, she hired a good family friend,…

Think Before You Blurt

By Legal Council | April 16, 2009

And you thought doctors were supposed to be smart… Brian was hospitalized for a week last August. One day his friend Cheryl was visiting him when a doctor walked into his room. She introduced herself as the allergy specialist, and she’d come to check for any allergic response to the medications he’d been given. Then…

Welcome to America, Gilles!

By Justin Hayford | April 2, 2009

We do love reporting stories with happy endings. So here we go. Gilles is from Cameroon, and was granted asylum by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) in August of 2005. Gilles wanted to get a green card so that he would be an official ‘lawful permanent resident,’ the first step toward becoming…

Steven Barrera, Superduper Hero

By Justin Hayford | March 26, 2009

In truth, it’s nothing special. We here at AIDS Legal Council often have to rush out of the office to help clients in tight spots. But here’s a story that reminds us why it’s important for the Council to be ready at a moment’s notice to leap tall buildings in a single bound (metaphorically, of…

If You Talk, You Pay

By Justin Hayford | March 20, 2009

Remember the case of the loose-lipped phlebotomist? It has a happy ending. A few months ago we told you about Leonard, who got his blood drawn at a suburban hospital. He started chatting with the phlebotomist, and it turned out that her nephew worked in the same store as Leonard. A few weeks later, everyone…

The VA Wises Up

By Justin Hayford | March 18, 2009

File this one under “You’ve Got To Be Kidding Me, It’s Not 1983 Anymore.” Our client Mark is a disabled veteran. A few years ago he was a raging alcoholic and drug addict. Then he started going to NA and AA meetings every day — yes, every day — for 18 months (hell, I can’t…

Another COBRA Success Story

By Justin Hayford | March 10, 2009

A lot of people think that the only legal cases that matter are the big, headline-garnering lawsuits. But often, a little bit of simple legal assistance can make a huge difference in someone’s life. And it doesn’t come with thousands of dollars in attorneys fees attached. Case in point: a few weeks ago Bill called…

Ah, the Heartlessness of the ‘Public Servant’

By Justin Hayford | February 11, 2009

Just when you thought you’d heard all there is to hear about unfeeling government workers… Our client Doug (not his real name) recently learned he has a Social Security overpayment of about $25,000. He did some part-time work for several years, and Social Security shouldn’t have been paying him benefits for about 24 months, so…


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