News &
Updates

Client Story

Untying the Knot of Family Law Issues: A Client Story

Written by Legal Aid WV

01/25/2018

Lindsey and Lesha Frith worked long hours, doing challenging work, but they were proud to have jobs that put food on the table. Looking for opportunities to better herself, Lesha saw an opportunity in a local newspaper: she could take classes to earn her nurse’s aide license at a local career center, while a state government program would cover the cost of childcare for her young children.

Accepted into the program, Lesha quickly earned her degree and began working as a nurse’s aide. The family still struggled financially, but they did their best. Several years later, though, the Friths opened an official letter from a state agency informing them they owed over $16,000 for childcare services received while Lesha attended school. To Lindsey and Lesha, it may as well have been 16 million dollars.

Lesha believed she had followed every rule, filed every bit of paperwork required of her. The dense, bureaucratic language made it impossible for them to tell what was going on. They knew they needed someone with legal expertise to help them sort the problem out, but they had no money to hire an attorney.

Desperate, they searched the internet and found Legal Aid of West Virginia. Their Legal Aid lawyer, Bruce Perrone was also initially baffled by the claims against the Friths. It took a tremendous amount of sorting out but Bruce was able to clear up the agency’s mistake. Without Legal Aid, the Friths wouldn’t have stood a chance of tackling the agency’s bureaucracy, and would have been held responsible for $16,000 of childcare expenses that they simply could not afford.

Stay up to date with Legal Aid West Virginia monthly newsletter for all the latest legal news, resources, and information.