HAVE YOUR CIVIL RIGHTS OR CIVIL LIBERTIES BEEN VIOLATED?
Before submitting your request for legal assistance by the ACLU of Maine – using the link provided below – please carefully read ALL of the instructions below.
The ACLU of Maine works to protect the civil rights and civil liberties guaranteed by the U.S. and Maine Constitutions and laws. We are very interested in hearing about civil rights or civil liberties issues you have experienced or witnessed in Maine. Learning about your experiences helps us set priorities for our advocacy in the courts, in the Legislature, and in the community, even when we cannot get directly involved in a specific case.
What kinds of cases the ACLU of Maine considers
Our legal department primarily works on criminal law reform; immigration; freedom of speech and the press; privacy; voting rights; police misconduct; discrimination based on race, national origin, sex, sexual orientation or gender identity, religion, or disability; and access to government documents and officials. Almost all of our cases are brought against governments and government employees, rather than private individuals or companies.
We generally do not represent individuals unless an individual case relates to a broader systemic civil rights issue or creates an opportunity for law reform on an issue that is an ACLU of Maine priority. We do our best, however, to provide suggestions of other resources you may want to contact.
We review all written requests for assistance we receive, but because of the high volume of requests, we won’t be able to let you know if we’re unable to help. We will contact you only if we believe we can provide assistance or if we need additional information. Please do not expect a response because we cannot guarantee one. We are unable to take most cases, even those concerning real injustices. If your complaint is not pursued by our office, it does not mean it is without merit.
How to submit a request for legal assistance with the ACLU of Maine
If you want to bring a civil rights or civil liberties issue in Maine to our attention, please use our online form available HERE. Please include your name, telephone number, email address, and a brief description of the civil rights or civil liberties issue, even if you cannot complete the whole form. The completion of this intake form does not mean that the ACLU of Maine is providing, or will provide, you with legal advice or legal representation.
We do not currently accept requests for legal assistance by phone, email, or in-person.
Please do not send us your request by mail unless you are incarcerated in a state, federal, or local prison or jail, or it is otherwise impossible for you to submit your request online. We cannot return documents, so please do not send us any documents you may need back. If you meet these criteria, you may mail a letter of no more than 1 page to ACLU of Maine, Attn: Legal Intake; PO Box 7860, Portland ME 04112.
To request a reasonable accommodation to submit your legal assistance request in a different format, or to request interpreter services, please state your request on the online form or leave a voicemail message with your request.
Our office only handles matters arising in Maine. If you live in another state, you can find your local ACLU affiliate here.
An Important Note About Deadlines
All legal claims have deadlines, called statutes of limitation. The deadlines may be different depending on the type of claim, who violated your rights, and which rights were violated. For some kinds of legal claims, you must file a claim with a government agency first, and these agencies have their own deadlines. If you do not comply with the applicable statute of limitations, you may be legally barred from pursuing your claim in court.
Contacting the ACLU with a request for legal assistance does not mean the ACLU represents you and will not stop the statute of limitations from running. To protect your rights, please consult another attorney promptly to find out what deadlines may apply to your case. Please understand that unless and until the ACLU agrees to take your case, you are solely responsible for any and all statutes of limitations or other deadlines that might apply to your situation.
Other legal resources
Although we may not be able to provide you with representation on the issues below, we do our best to provide you with resources and other organizations that may be able to assist you. Information about organizations you may want to contact for help can be found by clicking on the links in each topic. Any content or links to these resources exist solely for informational purposes. The ACLU of Maine does not promote or exclusively favor any of the listed resources, but instead mentions them as a neutral, separate third party. The ACLU of Maine also cannot guarantee that the information provided is up-to-date.