The Suffolk Pro Bono Project is pleased to honor Martin J. Murphy as the Pro Bono Attorney of the Month. Mr. Murphy has performed many hours of pro bono bankruptcy work over the past two years, and has been a constant presence at our Bankruptcy Clinic. His demonstrated dedication to pro bono service earned him this distinction.
After graduating from Baruch College and Brooklyn Law School, Martin Murphy spent the early part of his legal career at private laws firms in Queens and Long Island,. He then practiced law in-house for twenty years in the financial industry. Two years ago, Mr. Murphy started his own practice in Central Islip. His practice is multi-faceted and includes commercial litigation, bankruptcy, wills and estates, and residential real estate.
Approximately every eight weeks, the Pro Bono Project holds a Bankruptcy Clinic, during which clients briefly consult with a volunteer bankruptcy attorney. The attorneys determine if client is eligible to file a Chapter Seven Bankruptcy petition and whether the client is financially eligible for the Project. The attorneys also provide brief counseling during their consultation, explaining to each client the bankruptcy processes and providing debt collection information. Those clients found eligible for the Project are later assigned to a pro bono bankruptcy attorney. Since joining the Project’s panel in 2012, Mr. Murphy, remarkably, has participated in virtually every clinic that has been held. “Martin has been such a generous contributor to our Bankruptcy Clinic,” said Maria Dosso, Nassau Suffolk Law Services’ Director of Volunteer Services. “He’s just been an invaluable member of our team.” Reflecting on the many clients he has counseled over the past two years, Murphy said, “These folks are in difficult situations. They come in feeling nervous. But as they leave the clinic you can see on their faces that they’re feeling a lot better.” He added, “They’re comforted by knowing there’s help out there.” Murphy says he enjoys being able to help these clients and that he appreciates the camaraderie among the other volunteer attorney participating with him. “They’re great to be around, and I enjoy the clinic’s high level of professionalism.”
In addition to assisting at the bankruptcy clinics, Mr. Murphy takes on the cases of some of the clinic’s clients. In his most recent pro bono case, Murphy successfully represented a client who had sustained serious injuries at the time when she was running a business. Her injuries made it impossible for her to work, causing her to incur substantial consumer and business debt. The client is now permanently disabled and has been unable to return to work. However, with her debts now discharged, she no longer has to worry about collection efforts by creditors.
Mr. Murphy and his wife have been married for 32 years, and together they have three adult children. One is in law enforcement. One is a paralegal. The youngest is a senior in college. “I’m proud of our three kids and look forward to their future successes,” said Murphy.
The Suffolk Pro Bono Project appreciates all the fine work Martin Murphy had done on behalf of our clients. We are delighted to extend to him the Attorney of the Month honor.
The Suffolk Pro Bono Project is a joint effort of Nassau Suffolk Law Services, the Suffolk County Bar Association and the Suffolk County Pro Bono Foundation, who, for many years, have joined resources toward the goal of providing free legal assistance to Suffolk County residents who are dealing with economic hardship. Nassau Suffolk Law Services is a non profit civil legal services agency providing free legal assistance to Long Islanders, primarily in the areas of benefits advocacy, homelessness prevention (foreclosure and eviction defense), access to health care, and services to special populations such as domestic violence victims, disabled, and adult home resident. The provision of free services is prioritized based on financial need and funding is often inadequate in these areas. Furthermore, there is no funding for the general provision of matrimonial or bankruptcy representation, therefore the demand for pro bono assistance is the greatest in these areas. If you would like to volunteer, please contact Ellen Krakow, Esq. 631 232-2400 x 3323.