Gordon Thomas Honeywell firmly supports the ideal and the practice of equal access to justice. We fully endorse the pro bono goals of the Washington State Bar Association and we have donated many pro bono hours to disadvantaged individuals and organizations who cannot afford legal counsel. The firm encourages its attorneys to devote time to pro bono activities and provides billable hour credit for pro bono work.
We have been honored to repeatedly receive the Law Firm Pro Bono Award from the Tacoma-Pierce County Bar Association (2007, 2009-2011, and 2013-2015), an award that recognizes a single Pierce County law firm for providing free legal services to those in need. Gordon Thomas Honeywell is proud to have been recognized for our ongoing support of Pierce County's Volunteer Legal Services, other bar events, and our overall involvement in the community.
Representative Pro Bono Work
- Gordon Thomas Honeywell attorney James Beck Helps Immigrant Escape Persecution in Pro Bono Case. Our client was born in 1984 into the small Garre clan in southern Somalia. Throughout his life, his tribe was at the mercy of the larger Marehan clan, and later, Al-Shabaab, an Islamist militia that seeks to impose Sharia law on Somalia. In 2007, Al-Shabaab fighters came to our client’s village to recruit young men to fight in their war against Ethiopia. Our client refused. For this, he was abducted, tortured, and nearly killed. After escaping, he left Somalia for Kenya, and from there, he traveled to the United States where he claimed asylum based on a well-founded fear of persecution. Jame Beck devoted his efforts pro bono and successfully prevailed on behalf of our client in the Immigration Court in Tacoma and obtained asylum allowing him to reside legally in the United States.
- Gordon Thomas Honeywell trial lawyers also successfully defended a Lakewood woman in an international child abduction case brought under the Hague Convention. The Court agreed with our position and allowed the child to remain with his mother and sister in the United States. The Judge praised Gordon Thomas Honeywell for its commitment to justice, and commended our lawyers for their representation of a client in need in such difficult circumstances.
- We cooperated with the ACLU in a Federal lawsuit with our lawyers serving as part of the lead counsel team representing current and future inmates in Pierce County jail in class action lawsuit to address jail conditions. After a settlement was reached with Pierce County, our lawyers continued to serve and monitored the jail conditions to ensure that the ordered corrective measures were completed.
- Gordon Thomas Honeywell lawyers represented two families defrauded by a landlord who engaged in long-term systematic practice of obtaining and keeping deposits of potential tenants but not renting to them. Both families lost deposits of under $1,000. Our lawyers obtained a $105,000 judgment against the landlord and ultimately prevented the landlord from engaging in future rental of housing units.
- In the Washington Court of Appeals, Gordon Thomas Honeywell lawyers filed a “friend of the court” or amicus brief on behalf of Committee for Indigent Representation and Civil Legal Equality (“CIRCLE”) urging the court to find that the Washington constitution requires appointed counsel in civil cases where the assistance of counsel is needed to ensure the validity of the judicial process.