Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Walmart to Offer Pro Bono

I blogged yesterday about some claims about pro bono at the Irish bar. This news item about Walmart's laudable initiative offers an interesting model for Ireland, where the government has expressed a strong desire to lower costs in medical cases:
... lawyers at Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., start providing pro bono help to kids on Medicaid next month. It will mark the debut of the first formal pro bono program at the global retailer and the first time that a corporate law department has taken the lead role in a medical-legal partnership (MLP).

Gearhart's [the company's General Counsel]  is hoping to expand Wal-Mart's MLP work nationwide. "Wal-Mart wants to be the catalyst for a network of attorneys who can be part of medical-legal partnerships with children's hospitals across the country," he says.

And Gearhart has another goal: to get a thousand lawyers involved in the network. That means Wal-Mart can't do it alone. "I'd love for any other companies to join in with us, whether a supplier or competitor," he says. "This is not an exclusive Wal-Mart program. We want to set an example for other companies."