Help Legal Aid of Olmstead County Curb Evictions

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Legal Assistance of Olmsted County is seeing increased demand for its service.

Applications for services rose from 572 applications received in 2018 to 708 last year.

Among the growing need is legal help through the Eviction Prevention Project, which Legal Assistance organizes and operates with the help of Southern Minnesota Regional Legal Services and Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota.

Julie Zachariason, a program manager for LSS Financial Counseling, said the work is key to helping address local housing concerns, which are compounded if people have rental histories marred by eviction.

“It makes it difficult, if not impossible, to get new rentals,” she said.

While attorneys help guide tenants through the system, Lutheran Social Services stands ready to help address budgeting and other financial concerns.

"It's a way to help meet people where they are at," Zachariason said of the collaborative that started in 2018 and has grown to include volunteer efforts of attorneys from Mayo Clinic and IBM. 

The Eviction Prevention Program started with a $50,000 grant as the 2018 recipient of the Mayo Clinic Shared Value Award. It received an added boost last spring with an added $10,000 from the organization.

Legal Assistance hopes to expand its local fundraising efforts with an annual fundraiser set for March 14 in the Mayo Civic Center.

Legal Assistance of Olmsted County Annual Fundraiser

What: Night in Monte Carlo: 15th Annual Fundraiser benefiting Legal Assistance of Olmsted County

Were: Mayo Civic Center, 30 Civic Center Drive SE, Rochester

Ticekts: $95 available at


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