Jeff Puryear named 2010 Craighead County Arkansas Volunteer Lawyer for the Elderly

FAYETTEVILLE, May 1, 2010 - In 2009, Jeff Puryear demonstrated his commitment to serving low-income elderly clients in Craighead County by volunteering over 62 hours of pro bono service.  On Law Day, May 1, 2010, he is being recognized by Legal Aid and Arkansas Volunteer Lawyers for the Elderly (AVLE) for his work with seniors. Puryear’s donation has a value of $9,300 to the community.

Jeff PuryearIn his work with AVLE, Puryear serves individuals needing advice about their rights as grandparents, about long-term nursing care, wills, and guardianship matters.  Despite the challenges of assisting this population, Puryear continues to be committed to serving these clients.

One of the cases in 2009 involved a grandmother seeking guardianship of her great-grandchildren and visitation rights with these children that she had raised.  He spent sixty hours on this case, including filing an action and representing her in court.

Susan M. Purtle, Pro Bono Manager and Senior Attorney for Legal Aid of Arkansas states,  “Jeff Puryear is one of our most responsive and kind attorneys.  He was instrumental in helping us with the Craighead County Bar recruitment drive for new volunteer attorneys in 2009 and 2010.  His commitment to serving elderly clients, as well as his support of pro bono among young lawyers and in his firm, were two of the reasons the committee wanted to recognize him as the 2010 Craighead County Arkansas Volunteer Lawyer for the Elderly.”

Puryear says about his work with Arkansas Volunteer Lawyers for the Elderly program and Legal Aid of Arkansas:  “Through the contributions of many others, I was very fortunate to become an attorney.  It is only fitting to give back to those in need of legal advice who do not have necessary resources.  Through these programs, I have the opportunity to help those who want so badly to believe in our court system and seek justice.”

The award, given for the first time, recognizes extraordinary commitment and service to seniors in Craighead County.  Arkansas Volunteer Lawyers for the Elderly, a nonprofit corporation providing free legal services to seniors who qualify, operates throughout Arkansas.  Currently over 600 private bar attorneys participate in the AVLE program.

Puryear is a partner with the Jonesboro firm of Womack, Landis, Phelps & McNeill, P.A.  He graduated from the University of Arkansas School of Law in 1993, with honors.  In 2000, he was awarded the W.A. Eldredge, Jr. Outstanding Young Trial Lawyer Award and was selected in 2008 as one of the Mid-South Super Lawyers.  His practice focuses on commercial litigation, products liability, personal injury, and insurance disputes.

Puryear holds membership in the American Bar Association, Arkansas Bar Association where he serves on the Youth Education Committee and in the Arkansas Association of Defense Counsel.  He serves on the Young Lawyers Committee of the Defense Research Institute.

Legal Aid of Arkansas’ vision is to improve the lives of low-income Arkansans by championing equal access to justice regardless of economic or social circumstances.  Legal Aid provides free legal help with civil matters to those who qualify.  If you or someone you know needs help with a legal problem, has questions for a lawyer, has been sued, or doesn’t know where to turn, call the Legal Aid Hotline at 1-800-952-9243.

Susan M. Purtle
Legal Aid of Arkansas
1905 E. Mission Blvd. #6
Fayetteville, AR 72703
(870) 972-9224 ext. 4301
(479) 879-21111 (cell)
(479) 442-0603 FAX