Established in 2018, the California Lawyers Association (CLA) is a nonprofit, voluntary organization, and the new home of the Sections of the State Bar of California and the California Young Lawyers Association. Its membership represents the vast diversity of California’s legal community and the various areas of law practiced throughout the state. CLA delivers high-quality programs, events, and resources and continuously seeks new ways to expand its offerings to fostering excellence and fellowship throughout the California legal community. CLA’s typical audience could be a small business owner, an hourly employee, a landlord, or any other individual in the State of California who does not practice law and could benefit from legal guidance. 


We recently had the pleasure of discussing CLA’s role during the pandemic with Ellen Miller, Director of Strategic Partnerships and Initiatives and Lauren Elledge, Initiatives Coordinator. When the State of California issued Shelter in Place orders, Ellen’s team worked on an initiative dedicated to providing guidance to employees, employers, families, and businesses in an effective and innovative way. Find out how CLA addressed many legal questions that came up during the pandemic. 



In response to COVID-19, CLA shifted its focus to create a dedicated channel that provides civic, community, and business resources such as information about the Cares Act, the Disaster Legal Assistance Collaborative, the Impact on Statewide Evictions, and a series of videos on how to best navigate issues surrounding the pandemic. CLA uses YouTube as a platform to share basic information on the various legal issues that have come up as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. These videos have been made available with closed captions in English and/or Spanish. Some videos are presented by a Spanish-speaking attorney or have been translated into Spanish. 



Before the COVID-19 pandemic, CLA had limited experience with translating for Limited English Speakers. Spanish is the first language chosen, thanks to the voluntary work of many members as well as CLA’s relationship with a school that teaches student interpreters. Because of the pandemic, CLA accelerated its plan to provide its members with basic information on various legal issues. With a larger scope in mind, CLA contacted Avantpage to discuss additional collaboration on the translated content. Having access to both partners ensures that the project can continue to move forward. 



CLA’s mission is to promote excellence, diversity, and inclusion in the legal profession, fairness in the administration of justice and rule of law. When local counties and the State of California issued Shelter in Place orders, CLA knew it had an opportunity to share its resources with bar associations, other trade, and professional associations, legal services providers, and more. Collaborating with a Language Service Provider such as Avantpage presented an opportunity to expand that reach even further. 



CLA is relatively new to publishing video content and has not yet captured the performance of its English or Spanish-language videos. While they don’t anticipate the videos going viral, Ellen Miller explains that “any views of the videos feel like a success in the interest of closing the justice gap.” CLA’s office of initiatives is working towards creating various projects, and more videos will be produced, translated, and localized for the benefits of all citizens of California including LEP communities. 

There is great potential for other key players in the legal industry to use language access to better serve their LEP clients and populations. Avantpage’s qualified, subject matter expert translators can meet all of your legal translation needs. Find out how. Call us at 530-750-2040 or request a free quote to get started with your project today.