Kathleen Willcox Williams

Kathleen Willcox Williams

Attorney at Law

Court Worker Fired For Helping Wrongfully Convicted Man

When the staff at the judge's and clerk's office tell you that they cannot give you legal advice or help you fill things out, they mean it.  It's not that they do not want to help you.  Sometimes it's not that they do not know the answer.  It's that they are not lawyers, and thus they are prohibited from the unauthorized practice of law.  Giving legal advice is practicing law. 


In Jackson County, Missouri, seventy-year-old court worker Sharon Snyder was fired for helping Robert Nelson's sister with a motion for DNA testing.  Mr. Nelson was proven innocent, after more than fifty years in prison for a crime he did not commit.  Ms. Snyder was fired one year from retirement, although it was later clarified that her pension would still be available, for helping him.  To read more about Mr. Nelson and Ms. Snyder, see here.

If you have legal questions, ask a lawyer.  It's our job, and we're glad to help.

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