Providing low-cost, limited scope services to clients needing help representing themselves

Need Help? Contact Janice

About Me

Janice graduated from Grinnell College and the University of Iowa College of Law, both with honors. She began her career as a legal aid attorney in Eastern Kentucky and West Virginia, and has continued to advocate for the most vulnerable people in our society. With more than 30 years experience in the legal field, she is passionate about ensuring that everyone has access to justice.



Janice provides one-time advice to help unrepresented clients navigate the legal system. This helps clients decide whether to pursue a case and know where to get the resources to represent themselves.

Document Preparation and Review

Janice helps clients represent themselves by helping them on a one-time basis to explain legal documents such as contracts or leases. She also helps pro se clients draft documents to start or respond to a court case. This is a one-time, low-cost service that helps clients represent themselves.

What About Payment?

Janice accepts payment by check, PayPal, or Venmo. Fees start at $25 for a one-time, 30 minute consultation. Fees are charged at a flat rate so that you will know exactly how much this will cost. Fees must be paid at the time of service.


How does limited scope representation work?

You can request brief advice about a specific legal issue or a short, one-time service such as document preparation or review.  This one-time service is done without any expectation of long-term representation.

To request services, send Janice an email with your legal question, giving enough facts about your issue that will help answer the question.  You will receive an email back telling you whether you are eligible (see eligibility information below). If you are eligible, you must sign the limited scope representation agreement and send it back with the fee. Janice may ask for additional information before responding to the  request.

Why can’t I call? 

In order to keep office expenses down so that this service can be provided at such a low cost to you, Janice has found that email is the best way to simply and affordably communicate with you. This also allows you to ask questions outside of regular office hours.

Who is eligible to use the service?

The service is limited to issues of Iowa civil law. 

You may not use the service if you have already hired a lawyer to help with your legal problem.

You must provide your name, contact information, including an email address and phone number, street address, and zip code.  You must also provide the full name of the opposing party so that Janice can check for conflicts of interest.

What happens if Janice cannot answer my question?

Janice might be unable to answer your question for a number of reasons. Some examples might be a conflict of interest, failure to respond to  requests for additional information, or the question is determined to fall outside of her areas of expertise. If Janice cannot answer the question, she will inform you by email.

What type of relationship exists between me and the lawyer?

When you submit a question and receive an answer, there will be a lawyer/client relationship formed. That relationship, however, will be limited in scope and duration. The representation will be limited to providing an answer to the legal question or preparing a specific document. Janice will NOT provide continuing representation in the matter and will NOT represent you in court. You must consent to the limited nature of this relationship both as to scope and duration. If you do not accept the terms of the  agreement, your question will not be answered or you will not be provided the requested services.

What do former clients say?

Navigating the Legal System

"Janice was thorough, thoughtful, and non-judgmental. She anticipated questions I may have, and walked me through the process step by step. Without her help, I would have been struggling and confused by the paperwork and requirements the court needed me to complete." Sofia ____________ "My car was hit in a parking lot and the insurance company ruled a no fault accident due to lack of evidence. Janice walked me through the small claims process and how to obtain a subpoena. She provided me with valuable legal knowledge and resources. I was able to obtain the video evidence to provide to the insurance company. The insurance company changed the claim status and determined the other driver was fully at fault in the accident." Stacy

Contract Review

"I am a entrepreneur and was exploring the world of board game publishing. Despite my own research into publishing contracts, I knew I needed a professional and experienced eye with legal experience to review a self-written contract I was to offer a potential client. Janice Binder reviewed my draft and offered valuable insight into the legal realm I am so grateful for. She was kind, reliable, and explained her suggestions clearly to me, someone of no legal experience." Daniel

Legal Research and Document Preparation

"I have relied on Ms. Binder to perform research and prepare legal documents on my behalf. Her work is impeccable. Her research and writing show both her keen intellect and her passion for serving the community." Barry


I look forward to hearing from you!

Contact Janice at


A new Consumer Financial Protection (CFPB) Interim Final Rule increases information for tenants about COVID-related protection from eviction, and clarifies that consumers have federal remedies against debt collectors involved in the eviction that fail to provide or misrepresent that information.


In January 2021, an ABA Federal Free Legal Answers website site was launched allowing for immigration and federal veterans legal questions from users, regardless of which jurisdiction they reside. The site currently addresses the following federal legal issues:

  • Immigration: Individuals can ask questions about federal immigration law including deportation, asylum, green cards, work permits, DACA, children’s cases, employment-based immigration, citizenship and other immigration issues; and
  • Veterans Issues: Veterans and qualified individuals can ask about VA benefits, discharge upgrades, and similar veterans’ legal issues.


UPDATE: President Joe Biden  extended the federal ban on evictions through March 2021! The COVID relief bill extended the eviction  CDC moratorium until January 31, 2021. The Order protects renters who meet certain requirements and who sign a declaration form and give it to the landlord.


The National Consumer Law Center wants people to know that the U.S. Treasury has begun issuing its second round of stimulus payments. People who don’t receive a direct deposit by early January should look for either a check or Economic Impact Payment (EIP) debit card in the mail. People will not necessarily be paid the same way they received their first stimulus payment.

Please let people know that the EIP card is not a scam. The card will be sent in a white envelope that prominently displays the U.S. Department of the Treasury seal. A picture of the EIP card and tips about how to use it without fees are in NCLC’s fact sheet.