Legal Resources

Below are links to California Secretary of State and Delaware Secretary of State. Please check with respective Secretary of State and local state laws as to where you want to start your business. See also Frequently Asked Questions/Business.

American Civil Liberties Union ACLU  working for Your Rights - Criminal Reform, Disability, Free Speech, HIV, Immigration, Juvenile Rights, LGBT Rights, National Security, Prisoners' Rights, Privacy & Technology, Religious Liberty, Reproductive Freedom, Voting Rights, and Women Rights. Information is not legal advice. Hard copies can be obtained at CBA Legal Information Clinic.

Debt Collection with Sample Letters

LGBT (name change and gender marker)

The Los Angeles LGBT Center

The Los Angeles LGBT Center is the nation’s largest community-based provider of LGBT-related legal services, supported by a team of staff and volunteer attorneys, law students, paralegals, and interns.

Bet Tzedek Legal Services  LGBT legal support


California Civil Rights Department, telephone -800.884.1684 (voice) Deaf: hard of hearing: 800.700.2320 (TTY).




Equal Employment Opportunity Commission: 800.669.4000
1.800.669.6820 (TTY for Deaf/Hard of Hearing callers only)
1.844.234.5122 (ASL Video Phone for Deaf/Hard of Hearing callers only)

Small claims court is a special court in California where disputes are resolved quickly and inexpensively. The rules are simple and informal. The person who sues is called the plaintiff. The person who is sued is called the defendant. You are not allowed to have a lawyer represent you at the hearing in small claims court. But you can talk to a lawyer before or after court. 

You can sue in small claims court if you are:

If you are not mentally competent, or you are under 18 years old (and not emancipated), a judge must appoint a "guardian ad litem" to represent you in small claims court. A guardian ad litem is an adult appointed by the court to represent you ONLY in the case in question.

There are monetary limits to suing in this court which can be explained by contacting a Small Claims Advisor or going to the court’s website.

Find California Small Claim phone numbers and web resources California Small Claims

Patent Pro Bono Program for independent Inventors and small businesses

Inventors and small businesses that meet certain financial thresholds and other criteria may be eligible for free legal assistance in preparing and filing a patent application.  The Patent Pro Bono Program is a nationwide network of independently operated regional programs that match volunteer patent.

Pro Se Assistance Program | USPTO

The Pro Se Assistance Program is the United States Patent and Trademark Office's comprehensive pilot to expand outreach to inventors who file patent applications without the assistance of a registered patent attorney or agent (also known as "pro se" filing). 

Law School Clinic Certification Program | USPTO

The Law School Clinic Certification program allows law students enrolled in a participating law school's clinic program to practice Intellectual Property Law before the USPTO under the strict guidance of a Law School Faculty Clinic Supervisor.