Legal Resources for Vets

One frequently asked question from our office is:  Is there any legal help for veterans through the VA?

Yes, but resources are limited to what they can help with. Depending on the situation, veterans tend to have to go outside of the VA for legal help.

Veterans are not eligible for these services unless they fit one of the following groups  below.  
Legal assistance is provided to the following groups:

**All active duty military (including members of a reserve component), 
**Reservists released from active duty, having served 30 days or more, 
**Federal civilian employees and their dependents are also entitled to legal assistance in certain circumstances.

If he or she is a military retiree – they need to go to this website

They need to click on one of the links depending on which branch of service they were in.  This gives them specific information on resources available to them, and how they can get services paid for. 

Air Force Legal Assistance

Army Legal Assistance Services

Navy/Marine JAG Corps

Coast Guard Legal Services

Military retirees can and should obtain legal assistance on most personal legal matters such as wills, powers-of-attorney, filing federal and state income taxes, and reviewing contracts.


If you do not fit any group in the above list - here is resources in finding free legal options in our community available to you.   

Nationwide VA List:

  • Local Resource: The Veterans Justice Outreach Program: If you have a legal issue pending in the criminal justice system.
    Purpose: Assists you with direct outreach, assessment, case management in local jails/courts. Civic Matters depending on the situation.    
  • Des Moines Iowa VAMC Contact: Sara Glenn, LISW, Veteran Justice Outreach Specialist, Email:  (515) 577-8892.  Hours : Varies
  •  The VA has representatives that can help, but cannot always solve the action behind whatever charges are pending.
  • If you are looking to resolve something through the DOT this is a separate entity of the justice system. 

Other Iowa Legal Services Available

  • Private Attorneys - This needs to be sought out by the veteran (Example: Divorce) The VA will not accommodate a veteran’s situation, when it was a decision a person made by getting married. ISBA Find-A-Lawyer Service
  •    Related Links: Criminal Lawyers for Veterans, Military Defense Lawyer, Attorney Disability Insurance, Military Disability Lawyers, Military Compensation Lawyers, Veterans Attorney.
  • Iowa Concern: Legal Advice and Lawyers Answer the Questions.  They can pick apart if you have a case, and what needs to be sought after to resolve your concerns, and issues.  Iowa Concern (Cedar Rapids):  1-800-447-1985 (Free Service)
  • Iowa legal Aid: is the statewide provider of free civil legal representation to low-income Iowans, working out of 10 regional offices across the state.  Mason City Office: (641) 423- 4651

           Applications for help statewide: (800) 532-1275
Apply online at

  • Legal Hotline for Older Iowans: 1-800-992-8161 Monday-Friday from 9 am to 4:30 pm. 
            1111 9th Street, Suite 230
            Des Moines, Iowa 50314
            (800) 992-8161 or (515) 282-8161
            (Statewide service to Iowans 60 years and older)

  • The Iowa Bar Association: Will assist you if you are in need of an attorney for a civil legal matter but cannot afford one. In Iowa there are limited resources and programs available to provide free civil legal assistance. When you call a program to request assistance, you will be screened for eligibility. A client is eligible for assistance if their income and assets fall within the established guidelines and if the case fits within the priorities set by the program. Not all clients who are financially eligible will be able to receive assistance because of the limited staff or volunteer resources of the programs. The program will assess your case to determine if they may be able to assist you. Your case may be handled by one of the staff attorneys at the program. In some circumstances your case will be referred to a private attorney who has volunteered to assist persons referred through a pro bono program.

General Information
(515) 243-3179
(800) 457-3729
Fax: (515) 243-2511

  • HELP Legal Assistance
    736 Federal Street, Suite 1401
    Davenport, IA 52803
    (563) 322-6216cb
  • Hawkeye Legal Service, Inc. provides superior service 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. We work for law firms, government agencies, and private individuals to provide process serving, and private investigations, throughout Iowa. (515) 276-3984
  • Process Serving & Investigative Services Include:
  • Statewide Process Serving
  • Surveillance
  • Address History
  • Vehicle Registration
  • Court Filing
  • Court Retrieval
  • Document Retrieval
  • Background Check
  • Private Investigator Work