One of the core values of Armstrong Teasdale is Investment. By that we mean partnering with our clients, our people and the communities in which we operate by investing resources in them and providing opportunities on their behalf. This takes many forms – from collecting school supplies for children in need, making repairs to the home of a senior citizen, donating to the United Way or serving on boards and committees of not-for-profit organizations. All lawyers and staff are encouraged to get involved and invest their time, skills and financial resources as they deem appropriate. Individuals, each office and the firm as an entity make numerous opportunities available.
Providing Pro Bono legal services for those who cannot afford them has been a priority of Armstrong Teasdale since it began nearly 120 years ago. As one of the founding members of the Washington D.C.-based Pro Bono Institute, Armstrong Teasdale has created several programs that demonstrate our long-term commitment to helping those in need. These include the Neighborhood Justice Center (NJC), which provides legal services to inner-city residents in St. Louis. With the St. Louis Circuit Attorney, we developed an innovative program that provides pro bono legal services while giving young lawyers hands-on trial experience.
Much of our pro bono activity involves the protection of women and children. Firm lawyers provide legal services to Legal Advocates for Abused Women (LAAW), a domestic violence support agency that issues free orders of protection and provides other services to victims of domestic violence. Other agencies we partner with include: Legal Services of Eastern Missouri, Land of Lincoln Legal Services, and Lawyers and Accountants for the Arts.
In addition to litigation, our lawyers have guided more than 25 nonprofit organizations in all facets of their organization and operation. The groups we have helped include an organization involved in the redevelopment of a blighted area of St. Louis, one organization that provides job skills to disadvantaged women, and another that provides a group home setting for homeless, pregnant girls.
The matters we handle include preparation of governing documents, liability of directors and management, membership, governance and control issues, and distribution of assets to qualified organizations on liquidation.
Our tax attorneys assist in the preparation and filing of tax exemption applications and in other tax matters involving exempt organizations and feeder organizations. The firm's Health Care and Corporate Services practice groups perform legal audits for nonprofits, reorganization studies, risk management, general contracting, and directors and officers and other related insurance matters.
As a member of Lex Mundi, we participate in the Lex Mundi Pro Bono Foundation, providing assistance to social entrepreneurs, including regulatory assistance, intellectual property and tax guidance.
We represented a native of Thailand in a widely watched case that helped convince the U.S. Congress to dissolve the “Widow Penalty," which allowed the government to deport aliens if their marriages to U.S. citizens ended within two years, even if the spouse died.
We filed an amicus brief in a First Amendment case before the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals involving a challenge to a mandatory school policy forcing children to wear a uniform bearing a certain motto. The brief was filed on behalf of the Student Press Law Center and the parents who contested the school’s policy.
The firm assisted a Nicaraguan refugee who lost her daughter in an international child abduction case.
The firm provided pro bono legal services to help transform Ferguson’s destroyed QuikTrip location into a job training center operated by the Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis. We represented the Urban League in the transaction in which QuikTrip donated the land, cost of demolition and remediation of the site.
We filed an amicus brief with the Missouri Supreme Court in support of the same-sex partner of a Missouri state trooper who was killed in the line of duty. The surviving partner sought spousal death benefits currently only offered by the state to heterosexual married couples.
Since 2008, Armstrong Teasdale has provided ongoing pro bono support to the Blessing Basket Project, a nonprofit organization that works with about 2,000 weavers in seven developing countries, helping them rise out of poverty through empowered entrepreneurship. The firm created the legal structure that facilitated Blessing Basket’s creation and expansion. It has also filed dozens of trademarks on the nonprofit’s behalf as well as given counsel on employment matters and other legal issues.