Our volunteers help photographers, painters, poets, musicians, playwrights, graphic artists, dancers, crafts groups, filmmakers, theatre companies, orchestras, arts councils and others pursuing artistic endeavors. Problems that are not considered arts-related include traffic violations, personal injury, criminal and family law matters. Not an artist or with an arts organization? Find legal service providers.

Individual Artists & For-Profit Creative Businesses
To receive free assistance, you must be a Missouri or Southwestern Illinois artist with an arts-related problem and meet our income guidelines. Individual artists (all disciplines) with incomes less than $38,640 per year (+$13,620 for each additional member of the household) qualify for free assistance. This represents 300% of the current federal poverty guidelines and is the highest allowable income for attorney pro bono services. For partnerships, gross receipts less expenses of operation using individual artist guidelines; for limited liability companies and corporations, net income plus salaries of principals not exceeding $50,000. Please submit the individual artist application above or the referral request below. Your application can be filled out online, but your $15 referral fee must be paid by credit card or check must be received before we can process your request.

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If you are ineligible for free services because your income exceeds our guidelines, we will provide names of lawyers and/or accountants who accept fee-generating clients. There is a $15 fee for this service, which must be paid by credit card or check before we can process your request.

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Arts Organizations
To receive free assistance, you must represent a Missouri or Southwestern Illinois arts organization with an arts-related problem and meet our operating budget guidelines. Nonprofit organizations with annual budgets under $500,000 qualify. Applications can be filled out online, but your $25 referral fee paid by credit card or check must be received before we can process your request. Please note that we cannot do audits and that Form 990-EZ preparation may not be able available on a pro bono basis.

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Forming a New Organization
New organizations requesting assistance with incorporation and applying for tax-exempt status should request a copy of our Nonprofit Incorporation Workbook and the accompanying worksheets, which must be completed before meeting with a volunteer. Your application can be filled out online, but your $100 referral fee paid by credit card or check must be received before we can process your request.

Apply Online >

Nezam
“Just weeks before launching one the biggest projects of my career, I got hung up on an unexpected copyright issue that drained my confidence. VLAA empowered me with the knowledge to come back and tackle the work with integrity.”
Mallory Nezam
Artist