Resilient Communities Legal Cafe

We want to live in a society where reliable and affordable legal support is available to all those creating the transition to localized, resilient economies.

Charlie Brown! That should be a pumpkin pie cooperative!The Resilient Communities Legal Cafe provides direct legal support to individuals and groups who are working to create new solutions for resilient local economies. Inaugurated in February 2013, the Legal Cafe runs weekly at different locations from East Oakland to Richmond, California. The Resilient Communities Legal Cafe is a joint effort of SELC and the Green-Collar Communities Clinic (a project of the East Bay Community Law Center).

Come, ask us your questions, and join others from your neighborhood who are taking their livelihoods, communities, and economies back!

How the Legal Cafe Works

The Resilient Communities Legal Cafe provides direct legal advice, workshops, teach-ins, discussions, and legal services to businesses and organizations that are trying to make their communities a better place to live and thrive. The legal advice given at the Legal Cafe is first-come, first-serve, so no appointment is necessary.

At the Legal Cafes, SELC and our volunteers specialize in serving cooperatives, nonprofits, cottage food businesses, social enterprises, urban farms, complimentary currencies, time banks, and small businesses. We provide advice and legal consultations around the following legal areas: 

  • Legal formation for small businesses: What are the regulations and requirements to have your organization legally function?
  • Legal entity choice: Should your org be a for profit, non-profit, and which legal entity fits best with your vision?
  • Employment law: Whether you're an employer, employee, or a cooperative, we can answer questions on how to prevent or resolve issues?
  • Securities law: What are the legal ways to raise money for your nonprofit org or for-profit business?
  • Tax law: What are the ways to receive tax exemption for your org?
  • Contracts: Contract review, drafting and negotiation
  • Liability issues: What are you governance requirements to avoid liability?
  • IP agreements and licensing: Do you have a product or invention that you'd like to protect or to be available as a creative commons but don't know how to do it?   
  • Environmental Law: Do you have questions about how to create more green spaces for your community? 
  • Food Safety Laws: Are you making and selling food? What are the regulations that you need to know to operate within the law?

Watch the video below to see a quick run through of the Resilient Communities Legal Cafe or click here to read more about how it works and what's being served up!

Dates and Locations

We base the Legal Cafe in communities for your convenience. Never miss a chance to come receive legal advice and participate in Teach-ins at the Legal Cafe!

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Teach-ins at the Legal Cafe

SELC's Teach-ins provide practical, participatory, and action oriented discussions around food, housing, livelihoods, transportation, and more! If you'd like to provide a teach-in, please visit our Legal Cafe volunteer page.

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Legal Cafe Bites

Find written resources created for our various Teach-ins that will help guide you in areas such as how to become a chef, how zoning laws can effect your food business, cooperatives 101, and more! 

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SELC's Amazing Volunteers and Attorneys

Learn about SELC's amazing volunteers, attorneys, their areas of expertise, and their contact information.

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Volunteer at the Legal Cafe!

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Why the Resilient Communities Legal Cafe? 

SELC believes our current economic systems prioritizes corporate profit over community resilience, destroying opportunities for satisfying and sustainable work, damaging the environment that sustains us, and unraveling our sense of connection to one another. That’s why SELC is committed to providing reliable, affordable, and accessible legal information and advice to the people who are creating alternative economic systems. Through this work, we can help form the enterprises and entrepreneurs that will ring in the new economy.

The Resilient Communities Legal Cafe collaborates with Impact HUB Berkeley, Alchemy Collective Cafe, and Liberating Ourselves Locally Oakland Makerspace to provide direct legal support for the solidarity economy.

Want more info about the Resilient Communities Legal Cafe? 

Contact Ricardo at ricardo@theselc.org

Are you a cooperative looking for ongoing legal representation?

GC3_Logo_UPDATED.jpgOur partner, the Green Collar Communities Clinic (GC3), is currently accepting clients that are "Enterprises that create job opportunities in low income East Bay communities that are either green/sustainable or incorporate cooperative ownership/democratic governance." For more info, please contact Jane at jehinger@ebclc.org

 

Legal Cafe Intake Form (SELC Staff only)

 

Legal Cafe Teach-in Sign Up (SELC Staff only)


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