Client Feedback

From Surveys 2021 – 2022 

Open Door Legal conducted a survey of all our clients from the past year to get feedback on how we can work to better serve our community. We would like to share with you the results of our survey and our plans to improve for the year ahead.

If it wasn’t for Open Door Legal, I would probably be sleeping under the freeway.

Submitted 6-10-2022

ODL is good at giving people a voice in situations where we feel voiceless, a lot of times the justice system doesn’t give you a voice but Open Door Legal did.

Submitted 6-10-2022

It’s a beautiful thing knowing you have hope out there with legal assistance from ODL.

Submitted 6-9-2022


of clients report that we made a large or extreme difference in their lives

  • Extreme 39% 39%
  • Large 34.4% 34.4%
  • Moderate 12.8% 12.8%
  • Other 13.9% 13.9%

ODL is good at answering your questions and explaining the legal terms you might not know.

Submitted 6-6-2022

My case was handled in a professional, efficient manner and I was kept informed throughout the process. Additionally, I found the staff at Open Door Legal to be friendly, knowledgeable, and quite willing to help me achieve the desired resolution.

Submitted 12-29-2021

They’re so helpful and understanding, it is incredible how much they changed my life.

Submitted 6-9-2022


of clients report that staff always treated them with respect
  • Always 86.7% 86.7%
  • Mostly 6.2% 6.2%
  • Sometimes 4.1% 4.1%
  • Never 2.6% 2.6%

Improvements from last year based on feedback:

Increased Retention

Better and More interactions with Spanish speakers

No complaints about online screening form

Feedback from this year on what we can do better:

Increase staff’s cultural humility and understanding of the conditions of low-income people of color

Better communicate if ODL can begin a guest’s case or not

Modify business hours as they may conflict with many clients’ work schedules

Planned actions for the coming year based on feedback include:

  1. Provide more clarity to guests around why we are providing brief services instead of opening a full scope case. We would like to prototype a practice of following up on completed brief services to see if more help is needed.
  2. We will continue to work on communicating with each client more often throughout their case.

We are planning to host more after-hour clinics to accommodate hours that conflict with clients’ work schedules

We will increase trainings for program staff on conditions of low-income people of color.

The above are anonymous quotes and aggregated data from our August 5, 2021- June 21, 2022 client feedback submissions. Feedback is collected via text message automatically during the case lifecycle and by volunteers every summer. Over 200 submissions were collected. Program staff do not have access to individual responses.

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Please make checks payable to Open Door Legal and mail them to:

Open Door Legal
PO Box #369
San Francisco, CA 94112

We also accept donations via:


Donor-Advised Fund


You can view all of the ways to give at

Please contact if you have any questions or need any additional information.  Thank you so much for the support!

Ever since childhood, our co-founder Adrian has been dedicated to reducing poverty.

He studied systemic poverty in college and went to work in the field for a few years. Eventually, he had a thesis that legal aid was the most cost-effective way to address poverty in America. He wrote up a business plan and used it to apply to law school. 

The idea was to create the country’s first system of universal access to civil legal representation that ensures everyone can obtain timely, competent legal help for any legal issue, regardless of ability to pay. That had never been done before in the history of the United States.

In law school, he met Virginia, our Programs Director. Together, they co-founded the organization, two weeks after Adrian passed the bar.

When we opened we put a sign in the window, and with just that marketing and almost no other outreach we were overwhelmed with requests for help from people with good cases who had been turned away everywhere else.

Our first year we had revenue of $35,000. We would hand shred documents because a shredder was too expensive. Despite the financial challenges, we were able to work on over 280 cases in everything from housing law to family law to consumer law in the first year alone.

The hours were extreme, the pay was low, and the learning curve was steep. Still, we persisted. We knew that almost everyone we helped was not able to receive services anywhere else. Eventually, we attracted the interest of funders. We tripled our revenue for several years in a row. In 2015, we won the Bay Area Google Impact Challenge, which enabled us to expand even more. In 2019, we secured additional funding from the city that allowed us to open two new centers in the Excelsior and Western Addition.

As of 2020, our staff has grown to 27 full-time employees. We’ve shown that universal access is possible. Now, we plan to scale city-wide, make San Francisco the first city in the country’s history to have universal access to legal help, and become a model for national replication.


1. American University, Key Studies and Data About How Legal Aid Improves Housing Outcomes

2. George Washington Law School, In Pursuit of Justice? Case Outcomes and the Delivery of Unbundled Legal Services